Nitrogen-doped pyrolytic carbon films as highly electrochemically active electrodes
Nitrogen-doped Pyrolytic Carbon (N-PyC) films were employed as an electrode material in electrochemical applications. PyC was grown by via non-catalysed chemical vapour deposition and subsequently functionalised via exposure to ammonia–hydrogen plasma. The electrochemical properties of the N-PyC films were investigated using the ferri/ferro-cyanide and hexaamine ruthenium(III) chloride redox probes. Exceptional electron transfer properties were observed and quantified for the N-PyC compared to the as-grown films. X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy confirmed the presence of nitrogen in edge plane graphitic configurations and the surface of the N-PyC was investigated using scanning electron microscopy and atomic force microscopy. The excellent electrochemical performance of the N-PyC, in addition to its ease of preparation, renders this material ideal for applications in electrochemical sensing.