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Membrane electrolysis for Bunsen reaction of the SI cycle

Gokul, K.U., Immanuel, V., Sant, Sonal, Shukla, Anupam
Journal of membrane science 2011 v.380 no.1-2 pp. 13-20
aqueous solutions, artificial membranes, atmospheric pressure, electrodes, electrolysis, graphene, iodine, platinum, sulfur dioxide, sulfuric acid
Bunsen reaction was carried out in a two-compartment membrane electrolysis cell having Nafion 117 as a separator between the compartments. Platinum and graphite, used as electrodes in the cell, were characterized by using linear sweep voltammetry (LSV) and cyclic voltammetry (CV). Electrolysis was carried out at 300K, in constant current mode with current density in the range of 1.5–4.7A/dm². Aqueous solutions of ∼5.0N HI containing dissolved iodine, with I₂/HI ratio in the ratio of 0.25–1.5 were used as catholyte solution. Aqueous solution of 10N sulphuric acid saturated with dissolved SO₂ was used as anolyte solution. The concentration of dissolved SO₂ in the anolyte was maintained by continuously bubbling SO₂ in anolyte at atmospheric pressure in first set of experiments, and by maintaining a SO₂-atmosphere at 1bar (g) in another set of experiments. Volume of the anolyte changed in the first set of experiments and so current efficiency determination became difficult. In the other set of experiments, the increase in concentration of acids in the two compartments compared well with the amount of charge supplied during electrolysis with current efficiency of the cathode in the range of 90–95% and that of anode in the range of 100–110%. Current–voltage characteristic of the electrolysis cell was determined and the cell voltage was found to vary linearly with an increase in current density. The cell voltage increases with increase in initial concentration of sulphuric acid in anolyte from 10N to 14.3N and decreased with increase in value of I₂/HI ratio in the catholyte.