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Ultrasensitive Electrochemical Methane Sensors Based on Solid Polymer Electrolyte-Infused Laser-Induced Graphene
- Dosi, Manan, Lau, Irene, Zhuang, Yichen, Simakov, David S. A., Fowler, Michael W., Pope, Michael A.
- ACS applied materials & interfaces 2019 v.11 no.6 pp. 6166-6173
- ambient temperature, cost effectiveness, electrochemistry, electrodes, electrolytes, emissions, films (materials), gases, graphene, greenhouse gases, infrastructure, ionic liquids, methane, mining, nanoparticles, palladium, prototypes, relative humidity, sensors (equipment), surface area, thermoplastics
- Methane is a potent greenhouse gas, with large emissions occurring across gas distribution networks and mining/extraction infrastructure. The development of inexpensive, low-power electrochemical sensors could provide a cost-effective means to carry out distributed sensing to identify leaks for rapid mitigation. In this work, we demonstrate a simple and cost-effective strategy to rapidly prototype ultrasensitive electrochemical gas sensors. A room-temperature methane sensor is evaluated which demonstrates the highest reported sensitivity (0.55 μA/ppm/cm²) with a rapid response time (40 s) enabling sub-ppm detection. Porous, laser-induced graphene (LIG) electrodes are patterned directly into commercial polymer films and imbibed with a palladium nanoparticle dispersion to distribute the electrocatalyst within the high surface area support. A pseudo-solid-state ionic liquid/polyvinylidene fluoride electrolyte was painted onto the flexible cell yielding a porous electrolyte, within the porous LIG electrode, simultaneously facilitating rapid gas transport and enabling the room temperature electro-oxidation pathway for methane. The performance of the amperometric sensor is evaluated as a function of methane concentration, relative humidity, and tested against interfering gases.