Cathode plasma electrolysis in diluted potassium hydroxide solutions: Particles formation and energetic estimation
This paper studies production of micron-sized metal particles by plasma electrolysis (PE) using an electrolytic cell with DC current up to 3 A and voltage up to 300 V. A formation of hydrogen plasma on a cathode resulted in electrodes erosion. The PE method was used for the micron-sized metal particles production and potassium hydroxide was used as an electrolyte. The experiments were carried out with different concentrations of KOH (0.125-0.625 wt%). We investigated KOH concentration on the PE regime and, thus, on the size distribution of particles obtained from the plasma-eroded cathode. Particles obtained by PE were comprehensively analysed; particle size distribution curves for powders obtained in different conditions were compared. Particle size distribution curves were shifted to the nano-range with an increased plasma current (KOH concentration). Qualitative energetic estimation of the PE was executed for the open electrolytic cell. Energy balance was used to determine the amount of energy released by the PE.