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Novel polymer materials for low-cost nitro vapor detection sensors

Blue, Robert and Uttamchandani, Deepak and Thomson, Neil and Skabara, Peter (2015) Novel polymer materials for low-cost nitro vapor detection sensors. In: 2015 IEEE SENSORS Proceedings. IEEE, Piscataway, NJ., pp. 1-4. ISBN 9781479982028

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Abstract

Current commercial sensors for explosive vapours are high cost bulky equipment not amenable to mass production and thus prevents their mass deployment within society. Our research objective is to create compact sensors that are not only portable but of such low cost that they can be installed in buildings in the same way as smoke detectors. We have developed novel polymers whose properties have been tailored to give them a higher affinity to target nitro group (NO2) bearing molecules associated with explosives. The polymers have been grown electrochemically onto miniature interdigitated electrode platforms yielding miniature sensors. Novel porous polymers based sensors are demonstrated which yield a detection level of 200 ppb of nitro vapours and can be manufactured at low-unit-cost.