The redox properties of Fe(II) adsorbed onto mineral surfaces have been highly studied over recent years due to the wide range of environmental contaminants that react with this species via abiotic processes. In this work the reactivity of Fe(II) adsorbed onto hydrous ferric oxide (HFO) has been studied using ferrocene (bis-cyclopentadienyl iron(II); Fc) derivatives as electron shuttles in cyclic voltammetry (CV) experiments. The observed amplification of the ferrocene oxidation peak in CV is attributed to reaction between the electrochemically generated ferrocenium (Fc(+)) ion and adsorbed Fe(II) species in a catalytic process (EC' mechanism). pH dependence studies show that the reaction rate increases with Fe(II) adsorption and is maintained in the absence of aqueous Fe(2+), providing strong evidence that the electron transfer process involves the adsorbed species. The rate of reaction between Fc(+) and adsorbed Fe(II) increases with the redox potential of the ferrocene derivative, as expected, with bimolecular rate constants in the range 10(3)-10(5) M(-1) s(-1). The ferrocene-mediated electrochemical method described has considerable promise in the development of a technique for measuring electron-transfer rates in geochemical and environmental systems.