Invisible electrodes with amazing powers

Reginald M. Penner, Nathan S Lewis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)


Seemingly overnight, electrodes with microscopic dimensions have become work-horses in electrochemistry laboratories everywhere. Depending on their size, such electrodes are called 'microelectrodes', 'ultramicroelectrodes', 'nanodes', or simply 'UMEs'. In the last ten years, UMEs have dramatically decreased in size, increased in speed, and expanded the possibilities for electrochemistry. Sufficient interplay between theory and experiment at every stage of the work to date has ensured that a logical path can be followed, and new results can be interpreted with confidence. Applications are wide-ranging, including analytical detectors, neurophysiology, scanning tunnelling and electrochemical microscopies, electrochemical kinetics, and detection of unstable chemical intermediates. The spatial and temporal advantages of UMEs will ensure that they are permanent fixtures in electrochemical laboratories, and that a constant stream of interest in their unique properties will continue for the foreseeable future. This paper discusses the basics of these electrodes.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)788-791
Number of pages4
JournalChemistry and Industry (London)
Issue number21
Publication statusPublished - Nov 4 1991

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry (miscellaneous)

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