Facile cation electro-insertion into layer-by-layer assembled iron phytate films

Charles Y Cummings, Alistair H Roweth, Andrew K Z Ching, A Toby A Jenkins, John M Mitchels, Sara Shariki, Soon Yee Liew, Wim Thielemans, Darren A Walsh, Frank Marken

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6 Citations (SciVal)


Molecular layer-by-layer assembly from pre-saturated aqueous solutions of Fe3+ and phytate is employed to build up iron phytate deposits on tin-doped indium oxide (ITO) electrodes. Globular films with approximately 1 nm growth per layer are observed by AFM imaging and sectioning. In electrochemical experiments the iron phytate films show well-defined voltammetric responses consistent with an immobilised Fe(III/II) redox system in aqueous (LiClO4, NaClO4, KClO4, phosphate buffer) and in ethanolic (LiClO4, NaClO4, NBu4ClO4) electrolyte solutions. The Fe(III/II) redox system is reversible and cation insertion/expulsion occurs fast on the timescale of voltammetric experiments even for more bulky NBu4 + cations and in ethanolic solution. Peak shape analysis and scan rate dependent midpoint potentials suggest structural changes accompanying the redox process and limiting propagation. Iron phytate is proposed as a versatile and essentially colourless cation electro-insertion material and as a potential energy storage material.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1722-1726
Number of pages5
JournalElectrochemistry Communications
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2010


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