Gold nanospikes based microsensor as a highly accurate mercury emission monitoring system

Sabri, Ylias M., Ippolito, Samuel J., Tardio, James, Bansal, Vipul, O'Mullane, Anthony P., & Bhargava, Suresh K. (2014) Gold nanospikes based microsensor as a highly accurate mercury emission monitoring system. Scientific Reports, 4(6741).

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Anthropogenic elemental mercury (Hg0) emission is a serious worldwide environmental problem due to the extreme toxicity of the heavy metal to humans, plants and wildlife. Development of an accurate and cheap microsensor based online monitoring system which can be integrated as part of Hg0 removal and control processes in industry is still a major challenge. Here, we demonstrate that forming Au nanospike structures directly onto the electrodes of a quartz crystal microbalance (QCM) using a novel electrochemical route results in a self-regenerating, highly robust, stable, sensitive and selective Hg0 vapor sensor. The data from a 127 day continuous test performed in the presence of volatile organic compounds and high humidity levels, showed that the sensor with an electrodeposted sensitive layer had 260% higher response magnitude, 3.4 times lower detection limit (,22 mg/m3 or ,2.46 ppbv) and higher accuracy (98% Vs 35%) over a Au control based QCM (unmodified) when exposed to a Hg0 vapor concentration of 10.55 mg/m3 at 1016C. Statistical analysis of the long term data showed that the nano-engineered Hg0 sorption sites on the developed Au nanospikes sensitive layer play a critical role in the enhanced sensitivity and selectivity of the developed sensor towards Hg0 vapor.

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25 citations in Scopus
21 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 79194
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: Electrodeposition, Mercury detection, Quartz crystal microbalance, Gold nanostructures
DOI: 10.1038/srep06741
ISSN: 2045-2322
Subjects: Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > CHEMICAL SCIENCE (030000) > ANALYTICAL CHEMISTRY (030100) > Sensor Technology (Chemical aspects) (030107)
Australian and New Zealand Standard Research Classification > CHEMICAL SCIENCE (030000) > PHYSICAL CHEMISTRY (INCL. STRUCTURAL) (030600) > Electrochemistry (030604)
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Science & Engineering Faculty
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2014 The Author(s)
Copyright Statement: This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-
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Deposited On: 03 Dec 2014 22:56
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2017 11:01

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