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In a recent conversation a collaborator had an issue of unexpected peaks in their cyclic voltammetry when testing in PBS with no redox active materials.
The PBS was also used to test some carbon electrodes, where no redox activity was seen; this led to the conclusion that the peaks were most likely due to species adsorbed on the gold surface.
At ZP we love gold electrodes, but know that gold is a lot more active than one would expect and it will adsorb species from the atmosphere over time. In this case we suggested to the client rinsing the electrodes in methanol and wiping with a cloth, which the collaborator did. After two washes they had reduced the peaks to 'zero'.