Effect of alkali-metal cations on the electrochemical reduction of carbon dioxide to formic acid using boron-doped diamond electrodes
The electrochemical reduction of carbon dioxide in aqueous solutions using boron-doped diamond (BDD) electrodes was investigated at ambient pressure and temperature. We discuss the effects of the alkali-metal (AM) cations, K+, Na+, Rb+ and Cs+, on the faradaic efficiency (FE) for the formation of formic acid. An FE of 71% was achieved in the case of a 0.075 M Rb+ solution neutralized to pH 6.2 by the addition of HCl. In the case of a Cs+ solution neutralized to pH 6.2, the highest FE was obtained with the more dilute concentration of 0.02 M. Of the four different solutions examined, the lowest FE was observed for the Na+ solution. Moreover, we found that the productivity for the production of formic acid is higher at higher current densities.