Electrochemical oxidation of oxalic acid has been investigated at bare, highly boron-doped diamond electrodes. Cyclic voltammetry and flow injection analysis with amperometric detection were used to study the electrochemical reaction. Hydrogen-terminated diamonds exhibited well-defined peaks of oxalic acid oxidation in a wide pH range. A good linear response was observed for a concentration range from 50 nM to 10 μM, with an estimated detection limit of ∼0.5 nM (S/N = 3). In contrast, oxygen-terminated diamonds showed no response for oxalic acid oxidation inside the potential window, indicating that surface termination contributed highly to the control of the oxidation reaction. An investigation with glassy carbon electrodes was conducted to confirm the surface termination effect on oxalic acid oxidation. Although a hydrogen-terminated glassy carbon electrode showed an enhancement of signal-to-background ratio in comparison with untreated glassy carbon, less stability of the current responses was observed than that at hydrogen-terminated diamond.
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