The Role of Mass Transport on Anisotropic Electrochemical Pattern Etching

Richard Alkire, Hariklia Deligianni

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Undercutting during high-rate electrochemical dissolution of partially masked copper surfaces in the presence of a flowing 1M H2SO4solution was studied. The electrode geometry consisted of a rectangular cavity with inert sidewalls and an active base, and with aspect ratios (width/depth) between 0.75 and 10. It was found experimentally that undercutting could be suppressed by the combined effect of surface film precipitation and by proper exploitation of convective flow eddies in corners. Under such conditions, the surface film formed preferentially in the corner regions and served therefore to stifle dissolution rates in the local area where undercutting occurs. For the conditions under study, a finite element method was used to calculate hydrodynamic patterns and concentration fields from which both local and overall convective mass transfer coefficients were calculated. The predicted overall mass transfer coefficient was found to agree within 6% of experimental measurements made by the electrochemical limiting current method. General conditions for achieving anisotropic pattern generation were identified.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1093-1100
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of the Electrochemical Society
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 1988

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Electrochemistry
  • Materials Chemistry


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