Mark joined our lab for the summer and made some important contributions to our understanding of the dynamics of the redox cell via Raman spectra.
The Novel Application of Raman Spectroscopy for Depth Profiling in Transparent Electrochromic Cells, Mark Elinski and Thomas Guarr
Electrochromic compounds exhibit intense color changes in redox reactions and have shown functionality in mirrors windows, and display devices. Several electrochromic compounds have been synthesized, dissolved in solution, and injected into transparent electrochemical cells. The objective of this project is to use Raman spectroscopy to measure the concentration of each compound in the cell as a function of cell depth. To accomplish this, a confocal Raman microscope was used to obtain Raman spectra at small depth intervals between the anode and the cathode of the cell. The reduced and oxidized forms of each material in the cell were also isolated, and their unique Raman spectra were measured. The concentrations of these reduced and oxidized molecules at each depth in the cell were modeled from these isolated spectra and the composite spectrum at each depth. This novel Raman depth profiling technique reveals that different electrochromic materials result in different concentration gradients in the cell, and surprisingly shows that even neutral compounds display a varying concentration throughout the depth of the cell. This technique can further be applied to reaction monitoring in batteries and electrocatalytic systems.
Mark is a Chemical Engineering major at Michigan State University. He also plays in the Spartan Marching Band, so we will be looking for him on the football field at half time!