A method for the separation of overlapping peaks in cyclic voltammetry by means of semidifferential transformation

Marcin Palys, Tomas Korba, Marinus Bos, Willem E. van der Linden

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    A method for extracting single peaks from complex linear sweep and cyclic voltamperograms is presented. Voltamperograms are transformed by means of semidifferentiation, then all undesired peaks are removed from the semiderivative curve and replaced by calculated baselines. The resulting curve is semiintegrated back, giving a voltamperogram with one peak only. Baselines in the semiderivative domain are determined by the least-squares curve-fitting of datapoints from peak border regions, using the equation that describes the semiderivative peak of a reversible electrode process. With this procedure peaks can be removed without assumptions about the mechanism of the underlying electrode reaction. Due to its design, the algorithm presented is suitable for the fully automatic processing of cyclic and linear sweep voltamperograms. Performance of the procedure was checked with generated reversible voltamperograms as well as in real experiments with both reversible and irreversible systems. The smallest distance between two peaks of equal height, for which the described method can yield correct results, has been found to be 110 mV for a reversible one-electron process at 298 K. This procedure can also be applied to the elimination of the cathodic current from the cyclic voltamperogram of a single component in order to get a pure anodic current value, free from cathodic contribution, or vice versa.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)723-733
    Number of pages10
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 1991


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