Electrochemical synthesis of Nitrides

Nitrogen reduction with an electric current

The electrochemical synthesis of nitrides in salt melts is a new method without the use of harmful gases and high temperatures.[1] We mostly use the anodic electrochemical synthesis carried out in a cell made of fused silica or steel. The electrolyte is a LiCl-KCl:Li3N (0.5 mol%) melt at 450 °C. Additionally, gaseous nitrogen is fed into the melt for the continuous supply of nitride ions.

The electrochemical synthesis of thin layers (e.g. TiN[1] or AlN[2]) is already known. We succesfully synthesized different microcrystalline binary nitrides such as ε-TaN or δ-NbN. Furthermore we obtained ternary nitrides such as Co3InN or Ni3InN with this method.[3,4]


[1] T. Goto, M. Tada, Y. Ito, Electrochim. Acta 1994, 39, 1107-1113.

[2] T. Goto, T. Iwaki, Y. Ito, Electrochim. Acta 2005, 50, 1283-1288.

[3] T. Lehmann, R. Niewa, Z. Kristallogr. Suppl. 2016, 36, 85.

[4] T. Lehmann, R. Niewa, 19. Vortragstagung für Anorganische Chemie der Fachgruppen Wöhler-Vereinigung und Festkörperchemie und Materialforschung/Book of Abstract. Regensburg: 2018.

Dieses Bild zeigt Niewa
Prof. Dr. rer. nat.

Rainer Niewa