Thin films of the perchlorate salt of an [Os(N,N'-alkylated-2,2'-biimidazole3)2+/3+-containing polymer have been formed on planar platinum microelectrodes. The electrochemical response associated with the Os2+/3+ couple occurs at -0.19 V. In aqueous perchlorate media at near-neutral pH the voltammetric response is close to that expected for an electrochemically reversible reaction involving a surface-confined reactant. Chronoamperometry conducted on a microsecond time scale indicates that the film and solution resistances are comparable for low concentrations of supporting electrolyte. However, for LiClO4 concentrations greater than 0.4 M, RFilm contributes less than 25% of the overall cell resistance. These results suggest that when the film is dehydrated and the density of redox centers is increased, electron or hole hopping dominates the rate of homogeneous charge transport through the film. The rate of homogeneous charge transport, characterized by D(CT)1/2Ceff, where DCT is the homogeneous charge transport diffusion coefficient and Ceff is the effective concentration of osmium centers within the film, depends weakly on the concentration of LiClO4 as supporting electrolyte decreasing from (8.1 +/- 0.16) x 10(-9) to (4.7 +/- 0.4) x 10(-9) mol cm(-2) s(-1/2) as the perchlorate concentration increases from 0.1 to 1.0 M. These values are about 2 orders of magnitude lower than those of the chemically cross-linked chloride salt of the polymer. The rate of heterogeneous electron transfer is unusually rapid in this system and increases from (5.2 +/- 0.4) x 10(-3) to (7.8 +/- 0.4) x 10(-3) cm s(-1) on going from 0.1 to 0.4 M LiClO4 before becoming independent of the supporting electrolyte concentration at (9.2 +/- 0.6) x 10(-3) cm s(-1) for [LiClO4] > or = 0.6 M.
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