Dedicated to Professor Giorgio Sberveglieri on the Occasion of His 75th Birthday for His Outstanding Contributions to the Field of Chemical Sensors

A special issue of Chemosensors (ISSN 2227-9040).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 July 2024 | Viewed by 14536

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
CNR-IBBR, Institute of Bioscience and Bioresources, URT-Reggio Emilia, Vvia J.F.Kennedy 17/i, 42124 Reggio Emilia, RE, Italy
Interests: sensors; VOC; food; waste; microorganisms; enviroment

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Guest Editor
1. National Research Council, Institute of Bioscience and Bioresources (CNR-IBBR), Via J.F. Kennedy, 17/i, 42124 Reggio Emilia, Italy
2. Nano Sensor Systems, NASYS Spin-Off University of Brescia, 25125 Brescia, Italy
Interests: study of the volatiloma; in the agro-food sector; set-up of new nanomaterials acting as a substrate for gas sensors (MOX); study of new biosensors based on biological substrates; gas chromatography with mass spectrometry (GC-MS) for the study of the complexity of the volatiloma; integrated IoT data-base from farm to fork to support traceability and quality in the food chain
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Dear Colleagues,

Professor Sberveglieri is a leading scholar in applied physics and the development of functional materials and their applications. He started his career in the 1970s working in the field of thin film solar cells, afterwards moving to the field of gas sensors. He first focused on the development of thin film techniques and then on nanowire technology to develop functional metal oxide layers. His activity addressed both the study of synthesis techniques to control and optimize material structures at the micro and nanoscale in order to optimize the receptor and transductor functions of sensors. He also focused on the exploitation of these devices and electronic nose systems in different applicative fields, including environmental monitoring, medicine, food quality, safety and security.

Working in the field of gas sensors, in 1988, he founded the SENSOR laboratory (http://sensor.ing.unibs.it/). In 1994, he was appointed as a Full Professor in Experimental Physics of the Matter. During his 50 years of scientific activity, he published more than 600 papers and served as a chairman at many different international conferences. In the beginning of February 2018, he was honored with a Prof. Emeritus position for his valuable contributions to the university and the careers of many different young scientists and scholars.

We dedicate this Special Issue to celebrating the outstanding career of Professor Sberveglieri. In the last five decades, many of us were fortunate to study, work and collaborate with him, witnessing his diligence and highly original approach to research, as well as his passion and devotion to education and professional service, very much enjoying his pleasant personality and friendship. We expect this Special Issue to be a much needed celebration of the contribution of Prof. Sberveglieri to the fields of materials and sensors, and we hope that the contributions to this Special Issue will inspire young researchers and scholars to continue innovations in the field of novel sensors.

Dr. Estefanía Núñez Carmona
Dr. Veronica Sberveglieri
Guest Editors

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Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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16 pages, 34971 KiB  
Article
Microplotter Printing of Co3O4 Films as Receptor Component of Hydrogen Sulfide-Sensitive Gas Sensors
by Tatiana L. Simonenko, Nikolay P. Simonenko, Artem S. Mokrushin, Philipp Yu. Gorobtsov, Ivan S. Vlasov, Ivan A. Volkov, Elizaveta P. Simonenko and Nikolay T. Kuznetsov
Chemosensors 2023, 11(3), 166; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11030166 - 01 Mar 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1429
Abstract
A hierarchically organized Co3O4 nanopowder was obtained via programmed chemical precipitation, exhibiting several levels of microstructural self-organization: the initial particles are 40 ± 5 nm in size (average CSR size is 32 ± 3 nm), have a somewhat distorted rounded [...] Read more.
A hierarchically organized Co3O4 nanopowder was obtained via programmed chemical precipitation, exhibiting several levels of microstructural self-organization: the initial particles are 40 ± 5 nm in size (average CSR size is 32 ± 3 nm), have a somewhat distorted rounded shape and are combined into curved chains, which, in turn, form flat agglomerates of approximately 350 ± 50 nm in diameter. The thermal behavior of the semiproduct (β-Co(OH)2) was studied by means of a synchronous thermal analysis (TGA/DSC). The obtained powders were examined by X-ray diffraction analysis (XRD) and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Nanopowder of cobalt(II,III) oxide was employed as a functional ink component for the microplotter printing of the corresponding film on the chip surface, and the preservation of the material’s crystal structure was confirmed by XRD and Raman spectroscopy (RS). The microstructural features of the resulting film were analyzed by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and atomic force microscopy (AFM). Kelvin probe force microscopy (KPFM) was utilized to estimate the work function of the material surface, and the scanning capacitance microscopy (SCM) data indicated the intergranular conductivity type. The results of the conducted chemosensor measurements demonstrate that the printed Co3O4 film exhibits hydrogen sulfide selectivity and a rather high sensory response (S = 131% for 100 ppm) to this analyte at an operating temperature of 250 °C. The dependence of the sensor response value and time when detecting H2S in the concentration range of 4–200 ppm was determined and the high reproducibility of the signal was demonstrated. Full article
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13 pages, 1312 KiB  
Article
Applying of C8-BTBT-Based EGOFETs at Different pH Values of the Electrolyte
by Polina A. Shaposhnik, Elena Y. Poimanova, Anton A. Abramov, Askold A. Trul, Daniil S. Anisimov, Elena A. Kretova, Elena V. Agina and Sergey A. Ponomarenko
Chemosensors 2023, 11(2), 74; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11020074 - 17 Jan 2023
Cited by 1 | Viewed by 2041
Abstract
Electrolyte-gated organic field-effect transistors (EGOFETs) is a popular platform for numerous sensing and biosensing applications in aqueous media. In this work, the variation of electrical characteristics of EGOFETs based on small-molecule organic semiconductor C8-BTBT and polystyrene blend in water solutions at different pH [...] Read more.
Electrolyte-gated organic field-effect transistors (EGOFETs) is a popular platform for numerous sensing and biosensing applications in aqueous media. In this work, the variation of electrical characteristics of EGOFETs based on small-molecule organic semiconductor C8-BTBT and polystyrene blend in water solutions at different pH values was investigated. A positive shift of the threshold voltage with near-Nernstian pH sensitivity was demonstrated in the pH range from 4.9 to 2.8, while no measurable pH dependence in the range from 4.9 to 8.6 pH was registered. These results indicate chemical doping of the molecules of organic semiconductors by protons from the electrolyte in the acidic region. In order to check the applicability of the EGOFETs in a flow mode, a flow chamber was designed and assembled. The preliminary results obtained in the flow mode measurements showed a fast response to pH variation. Full article
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15 pages, 7711 KiB  
Article
Effects of Vacancy Defects and the Adsorption of Toxic Gas Molecules on Electronic, Magnetic, and Adsorptive Properties of g−ZnO: A First-Principles Study
by Yang Shen, Zhihao Yuan, Zhen Cui, Deming Ma, Pei Yuan, Kunqi Yang, Yanbo Dong, Fangping Wang and Enling Li
Chemosensors 2023, 11(1), 38; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11010038 - 02 Jan 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1115
Abstract
Using first principles based on density functional theory (DFT), the CO, NH3, NO, and NO2 gas adsorbed on intrinsic Graphite-like ZnO (g−ZnO) and vacancy-deficient g−ZnO were systematically studied. For intrinsic g−ZnO, the adsorption energy of NH3, NO, and [...] Read more.
Using first principles based on density functional theory (DFT), the CO, NH3, NO, and NO2 gas adsorbed on intrinsic Graphite-like ZnO (g−ZnO) and vacancy-deficient g−ZnO were systematically studied. For intrinsic g−ZnO, the adsorption energy of NH3, NO, and NO2 adsorption defective g−ZnO systems increased significantly due to the introduction of Zn vacancy (VZn). Especially, for NH3, NO, and NO2 adsorbed Zn-vacancy g−ZnO (VZn/g−ZnO) systems increased to 1.366 eV, 2.540 eV and 2.532 eV, respectively. In addition, with the introduction of vacancies, the adsorption height of the gases adsorbed on VZn/g−ZnO system is significantly reduced, especially the adsorption height of the NH3 adsorbed on VZn/g−ZnO system is reduced to 0.686 Å. It is worth mentioning that the introduction of O-vacancy (VO) significantly enhances the charge transfer between NO or NO2 and VO/g−ZnO. This suggest that the defective g−ZnO is more suitable for detecting NH3, NO and NO2 gas. It is interesting to note that the adsorption of NO and NO2 gases gives rise to magnetic moments of 1 μB and 0.858 μB for g−ZnO, and 1 μB and 1 μB for VO/g−ZnO. In addition, VZn induced 1.996 μB magnetic moments for intrinsic g−ZnO, and the CO, NH3, NO and NO2 change the magnetic of VZn/g−ZnO. The adsorption of NO2 causes the intrinsic g−ZnO to exhibit metallic properties, while the adsorption of NH3 gas molecules causes VZn/g−ZnO also to show metallic properties. The adsorption of NO and NO2 causes VZn/g−ZnO to display semi-metallic properties. These results facilitate the enrichment of defect detection means and the design of gas detection devices. Full article
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Review

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26 pages, 5964 KiB  
Review
Metal Oxide Semiconductor Gas Sensors for Lung Cancer Diagnosis
by Guangyao Li, Xitong Zhu, Junlong Liu, Shuyang Li and Xiaolong Liu
Chemosensors 2023, 11(4), 251; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11040251 - 17 Apr 2023
Cited by 10 | Viewed by 2968
Abstract
Lung cancer is the most prevalent severe illness in both sexes and all ages and the leading cause of cancer-related deaths globally. Late-stage diagnosis is the primary cause of its high mortality rate. Therefore, the management of lung cancer needs early-stage screening. Breath [...] Read more.
Lung cancer is the most prevalent severe illness in both sexes and all ages and the leading cause of cancer-related deaths globally. Late-stage diagnosis is the primary cause of its high mortality rate. Therefore, the management of lung cancer needs early-stage screening. Breath analysis is a non-invasive, low-cost, and user-friendly approach to diagnosing lung cancer. Among the various types of breath sensors, MOS gas sensors are preferred due to their high gas responses, fast response times, robustness, and lower price. This review focuses on the critical role of MOS gas sensors in detecting VOCs in lung cancer patients’ exhaled breath. It introduces the basic working mechanism of MOS gas-sensitive materials, summarizes some high-performance MOS materials suitable for detecting potential lung cancer biomarkers and provides performance enhancement strategies. The review also briefly introduces the sensor array and its pattern recognition algorithm. Finally, we discuss the challenges in developing MOS gas sensors for lung cancer screening and present the prospect of using the e-nose for large-scale early lung cancer screening. Full article
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25 pages, 3760 KiB  
Review
Formaldehyde Gas Sensors Fabricated with Polymer-Based Materials: A Review
by Yuru Min, Chenyao Yuan, Donglei Fu and Jingquan Liu
Chemosensors 2023, 11(2), 134; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11020134 - 13 Feb 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 2060
Abstract
Formaldehyde has been regarded as a common indoor pollutant and does great harm to human health, which has caused the relevant departments to pay attention to its accurate detection. At present, spectrophotometry, gas chromatography, liquid chromatography, and other methods have been proposed for [...] Read more.
Formaldehyde has been regarded as a common indoor pollutant and does great harm to human health, which has caused the relevant departments to pay attention to its accurate detection. At present, spectrophotometry, gas chromatography, liquid chromatography, and other methods have been proposed for formaldehyde detection. Among them, the gas sensor is especially suitable for common gaseous formaldehyde detection with the fastest response speed and the highest sensitivity. Compared with the formaldehyde sensors based on small molecules, the polymer-based sensor has higher selectivity but lower sensitivity because the polymer-based sensor can realize the specific detection of formaldehyde through a specific chemical reaction. Polymer-related formaldehyde sensors can be very versatile. They can be fabricated with a single polymer, molecularly imprinted polymers (MIP), polymer/metal-oxide composites, different polymers, polymer/biomass material composites, polymer/carbon material composites, and polymer composites with other materials. Almost all of these sensors can detect formaldehyde at ppb levels under laboratory conditions. Moreover, almost all polymer nanocomposite sensors have better sensitivity than single polymer sensors. However, the sensing performance of the sensor will be greatly reduced in a humid environment due to the sensitive coating on the gaseous formaldehyde sensor, which is mostly a hydrophilic polymer. At present, researchers are trying to improve the sensitive material or use humidity compensation methods to optimize the gaseous formaldehyde sensor. The improvement of the practical performance of formaldehyde sensors has great significance for improving indoor living environments. Full article
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26 pages, 3348 KiB  
Review
SIFT-MS: Quantifying the Volatiles You Smell…and the Toxics You Don’t
by Vaughan S. Langford
Chemosensors 2023, 11(2), 111; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11020111 - 03 Feb 2023
Cited by 11 | Viewed by 2508
Abstract
The human olfactory system is highly attuned to detection of a wide range of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), but the sensitivity varies considerably based on chemical functionality. Whereas most humans can appreciate the sensory properties of certain foods, beverages, and fragrances, and at [...] Read more.
The human olfactory system is highly attuned to detection of a wide range of volatile organic compounds (VOCs), but the sensitivity varies considerably based on chemical functionality. Whereas most humans can appreciate the sensory properties of certain foods, beverages, and fragrances, and at times be alerted to volatile chemical hazards, many VOCs are hazardous below the human odor detection threshold. Since its introduction in the mid-1990s, selected ion flow tube mass spectrometry (SIFT-MS) has been widely applied to quantitative analysis of a broad range of VOCs in applications from food products to workplace safety to environmental monitoring, and most recently to pharmaceutical testing. This review surveys the applications of SIFT-MS in odor analysis and in workplace, environmental and consumer protection, with a particular focus on the complementarity of this real-time mass spectrometry analyzer to sensor technology and conventional laboratory techniques—in particular, gas chromatography–mass spectrometry (GC/MS). Full article
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