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Sensors, Vol. 16, Pages 1820: A Photoactivated Gas Detector for Toluene Sensing at Room Temperature Based on New Coral-Like ZnO Nanostructure Arrays

A photoactivated gas detector operated at room temperature was microfabricated using a simple hydrothermal method. We report that the photoactivated gas detector can detect toluene using a UV illumination of 2 μW/cm2. By ultraviolet (UV) illumination, gas detectors sense toluene at room temperature without heating. A significant enhancement of detector sensitivity is achieved because of the high surface-area-to-volume ratio of the morphology of the coral-like ZnO nanorods arrays (NRAs) and the increased number of photo-induced oxygen ions under UV illumination. The corresponding sensitivity (ΔR/R0) of the detector based on coral-like ZnO NRAs is enhanced by approximately 1022% compared to that of thin-film detectors. The proposed detector greatly extends the dynamic range of detection of metal-oxide-based detectors for gas sensing applications. We report the first-ever detection of toluene with a novel coral-like NRAs gas detector at room temperature. A sensing mechanism model is also proposed to explain the sensing responses of gas detectors based on coral-like ZnO NRAs.

Authors:   Yeh, Li-Ko ; Luo, Jie-Chun ; Chen, Min-Chun ; Wu, Chih-Hung ; Chen, Jian-Zhang ; Cheng, I-Chun ; Hsu, Cheng-Che ; Tian, Wei-Cheng
Journal:   Sensors
Volume:   16
edition:   11
Year:   2016
Pages:   1820
DOI:   10.3390/s16111820
Publication date:   31-Oct-2016
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