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  • Author or Editor: Derek Pletcher x
  • Chemistry and Chemical Engineering x
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In order for microflow electrolysis cells to make their full contribution to routine laboratory organic synthesis, they must be capable of carrying out reactions with good selectivity and high conversion at a high rate of conversion. In addition to appropriate choice of the electrolysis medium and control of the overall cell chemistry, both the design of the electrolysis cell (including materials of construction) and the correct selection of the cell current and flow rate of the solution are critical in determining performance. The conclusions are tested using the methoxylation of N-formylpyrrolidine as the test reaction in a microflow electrolysis cell with a single, long, patterned flow channel.

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In recent papers, laboratory microfluidic electrolysis cells with extended channel lengths (0.7–2 m) and narrow interelectrode gap (≤0.5 mm) have been introduced; these cells permit high conversions at a flow rate consistent with the synthesis of products at a rate of multigrams/hour. Such microflow electrolysis cells must be operated with appropriate control parameters if good performance is to be achieved; thus, this paper emphasizes the correct selection of cell current, flow rate, and counter electrode chemistry. It is also shown that, within the limitations, the cells can be used for a number of electrosyntheses in the synthetic laboratory.

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