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Dimerization of 9,10-anthraquinone-2,7-Disulfonic acid (AQDS)

Journal article
Authors Cedrik Wiberg
Thomas J. Carney
Fikile Brushett
Elisabet Ahlberg
Ergang Wang
Published in Electrochimica Acta
Volume 317
Pages 478-485
ISSN 00134686
Publication year 2019
Published at Department of Chemistry and Molecular Biology
Pages 478-485
Language en
Keywords Diffusion NMR, Quinone, Redox flow battery, Rotating disk electrode voltammetry
Subject categories Electrochemistry, Organic Chemistry


© 2019 Elsevier Ltd The redox flow battery is a leading candidate to supply society with large-scale energy storage. In the category of aqueous organic redox flow batteries, 9,10-anthraquinone-2,7-disulfonic acid (AQDS) is considered a top-performing molecule and shows ideal electrochemical behavior at low concentrations around 1 mM. However, its behavior at higher concentrations was rarely studied. In this work, the correlation between concentration and electrochemical capacity is evaluated for AQDS in 1 M H2SO4 and 1 M alkaline sodium carbonate buffer, employing cyclic voltammetry, rotating disk electrode voltammetry and diffusion NMR. It was found that an electrochemically inactive dimer was formed by the unreduced AQDS molecules, with dimerization equilibrium constants determined to be K = 5 M−1 for the acidic electrolyte and 8 M−1 for the alkaline one, significantly inhibiting full electrochemical utilization of the system. However, upon reduction of the bulk material, the dimerization will shift in favor of monomer or quinhydrone formation, possibly alleviating the impediment to reduction. Finally, it was found that the dimerization could be decreased slightly by increasing the temperature of the system.

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