Characteristics of subtractive anodic stripping voltammetry of lead, cadmium and thallium at silver-gold alloy electrodes

Y. Bonfil, M. Brand, E. Kirowa-Eisner*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Silver-gold alloy electrodes have been studied for the purpose of the quantitative determination of heavy metals by subtractive anodic stripping voltammetry, (SASV). The results have been compared with those obtained with the silver and gold electrodes. The 50/50 a/o Ag/Au alloy electrode is the most suitable for quantifying thallium in the presence of lead and cadmium. The separation of its peak from those of lead and cadmium is 200 mV, which is about twice the separation obtained on the pure metal electrodes and is also better than on mercury. The silver electrode is suitable for the simultaneous determination of thallium, lead and cadmium. The peaks of lead and cadmium overlap on the 50/50 alloy. Pure silver or pure gold can be used for simultaneous quantification of these two metals. The use of gold for quantifying lead and cadmium is more limited because the peak potential of cadmium is shifted in the negative direction as its concentration increases and at [Cd 2+] > 200 nM, the two peaks merge. SASV enables correction for background currents and is of utmost importance for obtaining well-defined peaks. The peaks of lead, cadmium and thallium appear over a relatively narrow potential range (ca. 200 mV) on all the electrodes presented in this work. For this reason, the quantifying of a peak is based on the derivative at the inflection point of only one of its branches (ascending or descending). All SASV measurements were carried out without removal of oxygen.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1369-1376
Number of pages8
Issue number17
StatePublished - Sep 2003


  • Cadmium
  • Gold electrode
  • Lead
  • Silver electrode
  • Silver-gold alloy electrodes
  • Subtractive anodic stripping analysis
  • Thallium
  • Underpotential deposition


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