Electrochemical Deposition of Aluminum from NaCl-AlCl3 Melts

Qingfeng Li, H. A. Hjuler, Rolf W. Berg, Niels Bjerrum

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Electrochemical deposition of aluminum from NaAlCl4 melts saturated with NaCl onto a glassy carbon electrode at175°C has been studied by voltammetry, chronoamperometry, and constant current deposition. The deposition of aluminumwas found to proceed via a nucleation/growth mechanism, and the nucleation process was found to be progressive.The morphology of aluminum deposits was examined with photomicroscopy. It was shown that depending on the currentdensities (c.d.) applied, three types of aluminum deposits could be obtained, namely, spongy deposits formed at lower c.d.(below 0.7 mA/cm2), smooth layers deposited at intermediate c.d. (between 2 and 10 mA/cm2), and dendritic or porous depositsobtained at high c.d. (above 15 mA/cm2). However, the smooth aluminum deposits were about five times more voluminousthan the theoretical value. The spongy deposits were formed due to difficulties in electronucleation and could beinhibited by application of pulsed currents and/or addition of manganese chloride into the melt.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of The Electrochemical Society
Issue number2
Pages (from-to)593-598
Publication statusPublished - 1990

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Copyright The Electrochemical Society, Inc. [1990]. All rights reserved. Except as provided under U.S. copyright law, this work may not be reproduced, resold, distributed, or modified without the express permission of The Electrochemical Society (ECS).

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