Special Projects: Fluidized Bed Echem Cells

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These borosilicate cells were designed and prepared for a local research institute for work with pyrophoric and air-sensitive materials in a fluidized-bed electrochemical cell. Materials used in the cell include lithium aluminum hydride solutions in ether, THF, and other similar aggressive solvent systems. The whole arrangement needed to maintain an anaerobic environment, yet allow for the use of standard Schlenk line techniques to perform manipulations and transfer materials into and out of the cell.

They show typical uses of our favorite connection, the NW flanges, with a Teflon and O-ring seal, held with a knuckle clamp. They can be used for vacuum-tight seals, and membranes can be sandwiched between the flanges. For the institute's use, the stock Viton o-rings have been replaced with either Kalrez or PTFE encapsulated o-rings for improved solvent compatibility. Each side of the cell has a ChemVac valve that allows for connections to a Schlenk line. The GL14 fittings and caps allow for the feed through of multiple and various sized electrodes, while the Standard Taper 14/20 fittings allow for the use of rubber septa for cannula transfers.

The image on the right shows two different porosity frits; a P2 frit acts as the support for the fluidized bed, and the P4 frit serves to separate the anode and cathode sides of the cell.

The institute has reported successful results from the cell with no issues in regards to materials compatibility or leaks through the GL14 fittings or flanges during experiments lasting up to 48 hours. The system has been able to successfully fluidize particles in the range of 20-150 um. The system has also demonstrated the ability to maintain a dynamic vacuum down to <100 microns. 

Fluidized Bed Echem Cell, Top View

Fluidized Bed Echem Cells

Fluidized Bed Echem Cell Detail

It's always gratifying to get positive feedback; the researcher wrote back...

"I just ran an experiment in the cell this week with good results and great performance in regards to flow and materials handling..."

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