Micropatterned polymeric diffraction gratings have been fabricated and evaluated as volatile organic chemical sensors. When operated under nonresonant conditions, sensor elements were found to respond in a rapid (response time 5-15 s) and reproducible fashion to each analyte investigated. Relative response magnitudes were found to be in qualitative agreement with those obtained via surface acoustic wave techniques. Preliminary limits of detection as determined by investigations with micro-patterned polyepichlorohydrin, polyisobutylene, and polybutadiene gratings, respectively, were found to be 8, 11, and 7 ppm for toluene, 25, 258; and 72 ppm for methyl ethyl ketone; 41, 102, and 34 ppm for chloroform; and 460, 60, and 59 ppm for hexane. While generally less than 1 order of magnitude higher than those observed for identical polymer/analyte combinations in SAW studies, the observed limits of detection were at or below governmental standards (OSHA-PEL and NIOSH-REL) for each analyte evaluated. These diffraction-based sensors show promise for integration into an array-based sensor system, providing simultaneous identification and quantification of unknown analytes and simple analyte mixtures.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry