Electrochemical dilatometer ECD-3-nano
Test cell for the measurement of height changes in aprotic as well as aqueous electrolytes with nanometer resolution
Watch your electrodes breathing
The ECD-3-nano is the dilatometer with a displacement resolution in the nanometer range. The capacitive parallel-plate sensor systen of the ECD-3-nano can obtain displacement signals of below 5 nanometers. This high resolution makes it possible to explore new territory of electrochemical dilatometry. For instance, quasi 2-dimensional electrode processes like the SEI formation in lithium-ion batteries or the electrochemically driven growth of passivation layers on metal surfaces might become the subject of future dilatometric studies.
The heart of the ECD-3-nano is an electrochemical cell, which is hermetically tight against ambient atmosphere. The two electrodes inside are separated by a stiff glass frit that is fixed in position. The upper (working) electrode is sealed by means of a thin metal membrane through which any charge-induced height change is transmitted towards the sensor/load unit above.
Upgrade kits for typical configurations
In the standard configuration, the ECD-3-nano is equipped for aprotic electrochemistry (dilatometer cell, sensor and sensor-controller with dc-voltage output -10 to 10 V) with integrated USB data logger. Materials in media contact are stainless steel and PEEK. The user has to provide all peripheral equipment like temperature chamber and potentiostat.
Various add-ons are available for special testing requirements:
Upgrade Kit Aqueous: replaces stainless steel parts by gold parts and thus makes the ECD-3-nano compatible with aqueous electrochemistry.
ECD-3 Full Cell Kit: Part kit for testing full cells without T-frit.
Part Kit for Testing Single Crystals/Grains: Part kit for using single grains or crystals instead of bound electrode films.
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3-nano_Spare-parts_sensor-unit.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4213″ src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3-nano_Spare-parts_sensor-unit.png” alt=”” width=”750″ height=”625″ /></a>
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_cell_body.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4206″ src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_cell_body.png” alt=”” width=”750″ height=”625″ /></a>
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_shut-off-valve.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4208 size-full” src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_shut-off-valve.png” alt=”” width=”1190″ height=”992″ /></a>
<strong>Central CE piston</strong>
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_central-ce-piston.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4209 size-full” src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_central-ce-piston.png” alt=”” width=”1190″ height=”992″ /></a>
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_spring_load.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4203″ src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_spring_load.png” alt=”” width=”750″ height=”625″ /></a>
<strong>REF electrode ECD, long</strong>
<a href=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_ref-electrode.png”><img class=”alignnone wp-image-4202″ src=”https://staging.el-cell.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/03/ECD-3_Spare-parts_ref-electrode.png” alt=”” width=”750″ height=”378″ /></a>
The sensors of ECD-3 and ECD-3-nano are both able to detect very small expansions of the electrodes. The main difference between the two devices lies in the detection resolution. The ECD-3 uses an LVDT sensor with a resolution of 50 nanometers with a maximum displacement range of 500 μm. The ECD-3-nano uses a capacitive sensor system with a resolution of 5 nanometers and a maximum displacement range of 250 μm.
The dilatometer does only measure the displacement (=change in thickness), but not the total thickness. The initial displacement reading is arbitrary and can be changed by just turning the micrometer screw at the sensor head. In practice, you turn the micrometer screw so that the initial reading is in the range of zero +/- 20 µm. After the measurement, for convenience, you substract some offset value, so as to set the displacement value exactly to zero at that point in time, where you have started the electrochemical cycle.
The frit is made of borosilicate 3.3 glass (Duran®) and so can be cleaned with any agents lab glass is compatible with, including e.g. hot aqueous HNO3. According to our experience, the staining of the T-frit does not affect electrochemical results.
Sample test results
Assembly of the ECD-3-nano electrochemical dilatometer
In this video, you will learn how to assemble an ECD-3 electrochemical dilatometer inside the glove box, how to connect it and finally how to adjust the sensor for testing.