Design of a dual electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance with dissipation monitoring
Sprache des Titels:
The design and fabrication of a dual electrochemical quartz crystal microbalance sensor unit with dissipation monitoring (EQCMD) for in situ monitoring of crystallization processes, such as the formation of zeolites from liquid media, is reported. The integrated temperature unit is based on Peltier elements and precision temperature sensors with accurate and fast temperature control. In this design, two thickness-shear mode quartz disk resonators are oppositely arranged, enabling the application of an electric field through the sample while concurrently being able to monitor the resonance frequencies and quality factors of both resonators. As demonstrated experimentally, this allows for the characterization of the sample by means of the viscosity, via the acoustic impedance, and the electrical conductivity. Monitoring zeolite formation based on these parameters, however, turned out to be challenging, mainly because the electrodes suffered from severe corrosion. Despite the use of chemically resistant materials and insulating coatings, the electrodes were attacked by the reaction medium, presumably due to surface defects. Furthermore, air bubbles, which developed over time and adhered persistently to the quartz surfaces, also had a negative influence on the measurement. Despite the encountered issues, we want to communicate our sensor design, as its basic functionality, including the dedicated electronics and software perform well, and reporting the observed issues will enable further progress in this field.