PEP Review 84-2-3
Hydrogen Peroxide by Cathodic Reduction of Oxygen
Published: August 1985
Dow Chemical and Huron Chemical have jointly developed a trickle-bed electrolytic cell for making an alkaline hydrogen peroxide solution, by cathodic reduction of oxygen. The cathode consists of graphite chips coated with a mixture of carbon black and Teflon�. The cell operates at 25°C, 2 volts, 0.031 amp/cm2, and an oxygen pressure of less than 1 psig, with a current efficiency of 67%. The Dow-Huron process produces a solution of 2 wt% hydrogen peroxide in 1 M sodium hydroxide, for wood pulp bleaching in the paper industry. The joint venture is operating a continuous pilot plant to generate data for designing a commercial unit for use on-site by pulp bleachers.
Given certain conditions on the capacity and the price of electricity, the electrochemical route can be commercially attractive.