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Laboratory of Electrode Processes and Galvanotechnics

Head of the Laboratory:

Aleksander Shmygalev, PhD (Chemistry)

Тel.: +7 (343) 362 33 01

E-mail: shmygalev[at]ihte.uran.ru

The Laboratory was founded on the basis of the Laboratory of the Molten Salts Electrolysis established in 1961 by  Doctor Professor Leonid Ivanovskiy.

There are 29 Research Associated including  1 Doctor of Science in Chemistry, 1 Doctor of Science in Physics and Math, 7 PhDs in Chemistry, 3 PhD in Physics and Math and 1 PhD in Technology.

Webpage of The Computer Simulation Group

 Research and development:

  1. Development of industrially friendly and resource saving technological processes and cell design;

  2. Studying the thermodynamics and kinetics of electrode discharge and ionization processes in ionic melts, the influence of electrolyte composition and electrode material nature;

  3. Electrochemical synthesis of oriented nanocrystalline oxide tungsten bronzes;

  4. Research and development of new corrosion resistant electrode materials and coatings for improving non-ferrous and light metal electrochemical production technology;

  5. Development of electrochemical methods for processing recycled materials and non-ferrous metallurgy wastes as well as their valuable components utilization;

  6. Electrochemical production and refining of metals;

  7. Studying the electrodeposition of polycrystalline refractory metals and silicon in ionic melts;

  8. Development of methods for electrochemical synthesis of graphene, metal and metal compound powders, and coatings (Patent RU №2500615 issued  10th of December 2013);

  9. Studying the thermodynamics, kinetics, and mechanism of corrosion processes for stainless heat resistant steels and alloys and their components in molten (alkali halides and carbonates) metal-salt phases and exchange reactions in these systems;

  10. Modeling the electrode process kinetics in electrochemical systems with molten and solid electrolytes;

  11. Physical-chemical basis of electrochemical technologies for refining and producing metals and their compounds in molten salts.

Methods and targets of research:

  1. Polarization methods – stationary and non-stationary (chronovoltammetry and double pulse method);

  2. Thermogravimetric method;

  3. Long-term life tests of electrode material;

  4. Corrosion and structural study of electrode materials after life tests (in collaboration with the Laboratory of Physicochemical Analytical Methods);

  5. Detection of specific resistance of  electrode materials during electrolysis;

  6. The study of oxide solubility and dissolution rate in fluoride aluminum-containing melts of various compositions by potentiometric method and chemical analysis;

  7.  Research is performed using state-of-art smart equipment which allows registration the primary experimental data.

Key achievements:

  1. Basic criteria for continuous deposit and rare refractory metal powders electrodeposition in molten salts were developed;

  2. Regularities of halogen dissolution in molten alkali halides were formulated and hypothesis concerning nature of such melts was suggested;

  3. Regularities of electrochemical and corrosion behavior of gas-evolving inert anodes of different types for aluminum industry used at excess current loads depending on the anode chemical composition and anode material phase structure were detected;

  4. A new technology for the production of Ag, Ni, Co, Cu, Si nano- and microfibers with cross-section and length ratio of 10 to100 and more was developed. These materials may be used as high efficiency catalyzers at organic synthesis and production of porous electrodes for fuel and galvanic cells;

  5. Scientific foundations were stated and improved industrial technology of calcium production by electrolysis was developed;

  6. A new production technology for calcium and calcium-lead alloys for sulphuric acid batteries with increased operating life by molten salt electrolysis was developed;

  7. A construction of test electrolyzer and a new technology for the electrolytic refining of lead out of spent batteries was developed. Pilot tests of the proposed technique were successful;

  8. A new electrochemical process for the production of oriented nanocrystalline tungsten bronzes in poly-tungstenate melts was developed. The electrolysis parameters, which allowed obtaining needle-like nanocrystalline structures with the thickness less than 100 nm, were defined. 

Applied research:

  1. A technique of black lead refining from impurities, i.e. electrodissolution of metallic lead into a chloride melt and electroreduction of lead ions to metal of the same melt at the current density of 0.41 – 1.2 A/cm2 in the temperature range of 480-700°С. Two electrolyzer constructions were suggested for black lead refining, which include anode, cathode and bipolar electrode. The electrolyzer constructions are protected by patent RU № 2415202 issued  27.03.2011 and patent RU № 2418083 issued  10.05.2011;

  2. Object of investigation: nanocrystalline oxide tungsten bronzes. Purpose: ion-selective elements for the analysis of micro means, electrodes in fuel cells, electrochromic devices, cold cathodes, catalysts for chemical reactions (Patent of the Russian Federation No. 2426822 dated August 20, 2011). There are no domestic analogs for the production of nanocrystalline oxide tungsten bronzes. The electrochemical method developed by the group does not require complicated equipment and is characterized by a high rate of obtaining nanocrystalline precipitates, taking seconds in comparison with the methods proposed abroad. It is known that oxide tungsten bronzes are used as industrial catalysts for the processes of organic and petrochemical synthesis and, in particular, in the peroxidation of organic compounds. However, nanocrystalline modifications of these materials were not used. Earlier, we showed a higher catalytic activity of the nanoscale oxide tungsten bronzes obtained, in comparison with coarse-grained samples.It is established that nanocrystalline bronzes in the form of oriented needle structures are stable, and are not susceptible for agglomeration processes characteristic of nanocatalysts (Patent of the Russian Federation No. 2456079 published on 20.07.2012). These results served as the basis for successful initial studies of heterogeneous catalysis of processes of deep oxidative desulfurization of petroleum products using the materials we obtained. Comparative kinetic studies of the model process of peroxidation of benzothiophene in toluene at a concentration of 1000ppm at 35 ° C using a hexagonal structure as a catalyst for this process have shown that in 60 minutes it is possible to reduce the sulfur content to 12.1 ppm in S. Comparative studies did not use SAWS. This is the result of the world level.

  3. A new electrochemical production process for pure silicon nano- and microfibers obtained by molten salt was developed (Patent RU № 2427526 issued  27.08.2011). A production technique of continuous silicon deposit on different substrates by K2SiF6 electrolysis in molten salts (Patent RF № 2491374 issued  27.08.2013) to be used as the electrode material for lithium-ion electrochemical power sources;

  4. Electrochemical methods of lead-zinc plating of aluminium substrate, as well as titanium diboride and nanopowder plating(Patent RU №2455384 issued  10.07.2012).