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Effects of Annealing Temperature on the Structure and Capacitive Performance of Nanoscale Ti/IrO2–ZrO2 Electrodes

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Electrodes consisting of coating of the Iridium oxide–Zirconium oxide (70%IrO2–30%ZrO2) binary oxide were formed on Ti substrates by thermal decomposition and annealing at 340°C–450°C. The effects of the annealing temperature on the structure, surface morphology, surface composition, and capacitive performance of the coatings were investigated using X‐ray diffraction analysis (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (TEM), scanning electron microscopy, X‐ray photoelectron spectroscopy, cyclic voltammetry, and electrochemical impedance spectroscopy (EIS). The XRD and TEM analyses showed that 360°C is greater than but very close to the crystallization temperature of the 70%IrO2–30%ZrO2 oxide coating. The 70%IrO2–30%ZrO2 oxide coatings annealed at this temperature consisted of an amorphous matrix containing a few IrO2 nanocrystalline particles (diameter of 1–2 nm). The degree of crystallinity of the coatings was approximately 13.2%. EIS analysis showed that the electrode annealed at 360°C exhibited the highest specific capacitance, which was much higher than that of the electrode annealed at 340°C (which had a purely amorphous structure) as well as those of the electrodes annealed at 380°C and 400°C (which had higher degrees of crystallinity). On the basis of the obtained results, the following conclusion can be drawn: oxide coatings prepared at temperatures slightly higher than the crystallization temperature of the oxide and containing conductive nanocrystalline particles exhibit the best capacitive performance. We suggest that this phenomenon can be explained by the fact that the electronic conductivity of the coating is greatly improved by the presence of the homogeneously distributed conductive nanocrystalline particles in the amorphous matrix. Furthermore, the protonic conductivity and loose atomic configuration of the amorphous structure of the electrode are not adversely affected by the annealing treatment.
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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: May 1, 2015

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