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Advances in volatile organic compounds (VOCs) sensing

posted Jul 24, 2015, 6:18 AM by Khaled salama   [ updated Aug 1, 2015, 4:25 AM ]
Gas sensors are used in many applications including detecting toxic and flammable gases and food quality control; they are also considered to have
potential for use in noninvasive biomedical applications. Although the need for gas sensors is not new, low-cost and low-power sensing platforms that are effective for long-term routine operation remain beyond the latest research developments. Although gas sensing technology exists in the marketplace, its typical characteristics (bulky, power hungry, complicated instrumental methods and high cost) prevent their mass use. A multidisciplinary team lead by professor Mohamed Eddaoudi  and professor Khaled N. Salama at King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) addressed this problem in their latest work "Insights on Capacitive Interdigitated Electrodes Coated with MOF Thin Films: Humidity and VOCs Sensing as a Case Study".  The research address the development of miniaturized sensors that can be easily integrated with electronics. Their working principle is based on the electrical variation introduced in the sensing films by the diffusion or chemical reaction of various gases and vapors in the sensing area. 

prototypical metal-organic framework (MOF), a 2D periodic porous structure based on the assembly of copper ions and benzene dicarboxylate (bdc) ligands (Cu(bdc)·xH2O), was grown successfully as a thin film on interdigitated electrodes (IDEs). IDEs have been used for achieving planar CMOS-compatible low-cost capacitive sensing structures for the detection of humidity and volatile organic compounds (VOCs). Accordingly, the resultant IDEs coated with the Cu(bdc)·xH2O thin film was evaluated, for the first time, as a capacitive sensor for gas sensing applications. A fully automated setup, using LabVIEW interfaces to experiment conduction and data acquisition, was developed in order to measure the associated gas sensing performance (watch it in action). 

This work was partially sponsored by the Advanced Membranes and Porous Materials Center (AMPMC)’s grant FCC/1/1972-05-01 within the “Stimuli Responsive Materials” thrust. 

Congratulations Christos, Hesham and Valeriya.

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