Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials

A special issue of Chemosensors (ISSN 2227-9040). This special issue belongs to the section "Materials for Chemical Sensing".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (15 March 2024) | Viewed by 23781

Special Issue Editors


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Guest Editor
i3N & Department of Physics, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Interests: photoluminescence; persistent luminescence; nanomaterials; wide bandgap semiconductors; sensing; photocatalysis
Special Issues, Collections and Topics in MDPI journals

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Guest Editor
i3N & Department of Physics, University of Aveiro, 3810-193 Aveiro, Portugal
Interests: sustainable materials; carbon nanostructures; transition metal oxides; physical and analytical electrochemistry; biosensors; energy-storage devices

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In light of the serious health and climate crisis that the world has been facing, there is a remarkable rise in global awareness regarding the need for the continuous monitoring of disease indicators in our body, as well as the surrounding environment for viruses, bacteria, pollutant antibiotics, greenhouse gases, volatile organic compounds (VOCs), and so on. Hence, the field of sensing is a very active topic with great potential for further development, as sensors are indispensable for intelligent detection systems to assess chemical and biological information in air quality and emission control, water bodies monitoring, military and public security, food safety, and medical diagnosis. It is therefore imperative to develop low-cost and sustainable solutions for large-scale monitoring with high reliability, sensitivity, and selectivity. Reducing the production and operation cost of current state-of-the-art devices will boost their dissemination to the general population worldwide, providing crucial information to take preventive measures and swift mitigation actions.

In this context, nanomaterials constitute an auspicious platform for the fabrication of device-grade chemo/bio-sensors due to the unique properties that they offer in comparison to their bulk counterparts, with the additional benefit of promoting higher sensitivity and faster detection of multiple analytes. Engineering new functional nanomaterials that can be produced by low-cost techniques and that enable the precise control of electronic and structural properties is mandatory to optimize the performance of such devices, and to retrieve the required knowledge concerning the properties of these nanomaterials, as they dictate their sensing characteristics. Therefore, in this Special Issue we welcome papers focused on the production of low-cost and sustainable nanomaterials—in particular, semiconductors, metal oxides, carbon-based materials and nanocomposites, as well as their characterization and application in chemosensing and biosensing devices.

Dr. Joana Rodrigues
Dr. Nuno Santos
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Keywords

  • Metal oxides
  • Semiconductors
  • Carbon-based materials
  • Nanoparticles
  • Nanocomposites
  • New functional materials
  • Sustainable materials
  • Biosensors
  • Gas sensors
  • Chemical sensors

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Research

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18 pages, 4242 KiB  
Article
Low-Cost Carbon Paste Cu(II)-Exchanged Zeolite Amperometric Sensor for Hydrogen Peroxide Detection
by Delia Gligor, Sanda Andrada Maicaneanu and Codruta Varodi
Chemosensors 2024, 12(2), 23; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors12020023 - 04 Feb 2024
Viewed by 1165
Abstract
The aim of this work was to explore the possibility of using a Cu-exchanged zeolitic volcanic tuff (which is natural and easy to prepare and apply) for the preparation of a new low-cost carbon paste amperometric sensor for H2O2 detection. [...] Read more.
The aim of this work was to explore the possibility of using a Cu-exchanged zeolitic volcanic tuff (which is natural and easy to prepare and apply) for the preparation of a new low-cost carbon paste amperometric sensor for H2O2 detection. The properties of the zeolitic volcanic tuff were determined using chemical analysis, energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, the specific surface area, electron microscopy, X-ray diffraction spectroscopy, and Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy. The sensor was successfully built and operates at pH 7, at an applied potential of −150 mV Ag/AgCl/KClsat, presenting a sensitivity of 0.87 mA M−1, a detection limit of 10 µM and a linear domain up to 30 mM H2O2. These good electroanalytic parameters for H2O2 detection (a low detection limit and high sensitivity) support the possibility of using these sensors for the detection of many analytes in environmental, food and medical applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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14 pages, 3865 KiB  
Article
Water Vapor Condensation in Nanoparticle Films: Physicochemical Analysis and Application to Rapid Vapor Sensing
by Shinya Kano, Jin Kawakita, Shohei Yamashita and Harutaka Mekaru
Chemosensors 2023, 11(11), 564; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11110564 - 14 Nov 2023
Viewed by 1514
Abstract
Nanomaterial-based humidity sensors hold great promise for water vapor detection because of their high sensitivity and fast response/recovery. However, the condensation of water in nanomaterial films remains unclear from a physicochemical perspective. Herein, the condensation of water vapor in silica nanoparticle films was [...] Read more.
Nanomaterial-based humidity sensors hold great promise for water vapor detection because of their high sensitivity and fast response/recovery. However, the condensation of water in nanomaterial films remains unclear from a physicochemical perspective. Herein, the condensation of water vapor in silica nanoparticle films was physicochemically analyzed to bridge the abovementioned gap. The morphology of surface-adsorbed water molecules was characterized using infrared absorption spectroscopy and soft X-ray absorption spectroscopy, and the effect of RH on the amount of adsorbed water was observed using a quartz crystal microbalance. The adsorbed water was found to exist in liquid- and ice-like states, which contributed to high and low conductivity, respectively. The large change in film impedance above 80% RH was ascribed to the condensation of water between the nanoparticles. Moreover, RH alteration resulted in a colorimetric change in the film’s interference fringe. The obtained insights were used to construct a portable device with response and recovery times suitable for the real-time monitoring of water vapor. Thus, this study clarifies the structure of water adsorbed on nanomaterial surfaces and, hence, the action mechanism of the corresponding nanoparticle-based sensors, inspiring further research on the application of various nanomaterials to vapor sensing. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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14 pages, 3743 KiB  
Article
Laser-Induced Graphene on Optical Fibre: Towards Simple and Cost-Effective Electrochemical/Optical Lab-on-Fibre Bioplatforms
by Laura L. Ferreira, Rafael A. Ribeiro, António J. S. Fernandes, Florinda M. Costa, Carlos Marques and Nuno F. Santos
Chemosensors 2023, 11(6), 338; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11060338 - 07 Jun 2023
Cited by 4 | Viewed by 1329
Abstract
A 3D graphene foam made of interconnected multilayer graphene flakes was produced on optical fibres (OF) by laser-induced transformation of a polyimide (PI) film coated on the OF cladding. This material, known as laser-induced graphene (LIG), was explored in the electrochemical detection and [...] Read more.
A 3D graphene foam made of interconnected multilayer graphene flakes was produced on optical fibres (OF) by laser-induced transformation of a polyimide (PI) film coated on the OF cladding. This material, known as laser-induced graphene (LIG), was explored in the electrochemical detection and quantification of dopamine (DA) at physiologically relevant concentrations in the presence of the most relevant interfering molecules in biological fluids, ascorbic acid (AA) and uric acid (UA). The measured limit of detection is 100 nM, the linear range is 0.1 to 5.0 μM and a maximum sensitivity of 5.0 µA µM−1 cm−2 was obtained for LIG decorated with Pt nanoparticles (NPs). Moreover, immunity to AA and UA interference and to fouling was attained by decorating the LIG electrode with Pt NPs and coating it with Nafion. These figures of merit underline the potential of these sensors for the quantification of physiologically relevant concentrations of DA in biological fluids, paving the way for the development of hybrid electrochemical/optical sensing actuating platforms in a lab-on-fibre configuration, with relevant applications in biomedical engineering. The advantages of this hybrid arrangement include the possibility of in situ counterproofing, extended measuring ranges, photoelectrochemical detection and the probing of inaccessible places. This elegant approach can also provide a simple and cost-effective way to fabricate biomedical devices with extended functionality, such as medical optical probes with added electrochemical capabilities and optogenetics combined with local electrochemical detection, among others. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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18 pages, 6192 KiB  
Article
Synthesis of Flower-like ZnO and Its Enhanced Sensitivity towards NO2 Gas Detection at Room Temperature
by Zhicheng Cai, Jiho Park and Sunghoon Park
Chemosensors 2023, 11(6), 322; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11060322 - 01 Jun 2023
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 1099
Abstract
A flower-like ZnO was successfully synthesized via a simple chemical precipitation method at room temperature (RT) in distilled water, without the use of any catalysts or substrates. The sample’s structure was analyzed using various techniques including scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), [...] Read more.
A flower-like ZnO was successfully synthesized via a simple chemical precipitation method at room temperature (RT) in distilled water, without the use of any catalysts or substrates. The sample’s structure was analyzed using various techniques including scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray diffraction (XRD), transmission electron microscopy (FETEM), and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), which confirmed its hexagonal structure. UV–visible optical absorption measurements also revealed the presence of UV absorption at 365 nm. A reasonable growth mechanism for the formation of flower-like ZnO was proposed based on these analyses. The response of the sample to low concentrations of NO2 (1 ppm) was evaluated at different calcination temperatures, and the results showed that the best response was achieved when the sample was calcined at 600 °C. The flower-like ZnO sample labeled as 6ZnO showed the highest response of 54.18 when exposed to 1 ppm of NO2 gas at RT. Additionally, 6ZnO exhibited good response and recovery properties of 11 s and 93 s, respectively, at low concentrations of NO2 at 1 ppm. The gas sensing mechanism and the mechanism of the enhanced gas response of the flower-like ZnO are discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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13 pages, 2379 KiB  
Article
Effect of Channel Radius on Fluorescent Nanoparticle Based Molecular Communication
by Federico Calì, Luca Fichera and Nunzio Tuccitto
Chemosensors 2022, 10(1), 29; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10010029 - 11 Jan 2022
Cited by 2 | Viewed by 2132
Abstract
The effect of the communication channel size on the transport and subsequent detection of chemical messengers is investigated on millimetric and micrometric channels. The transport of the information carriers, being characterized by an advective and a diffusive contribution, was simulated by varying the [...] Read more.
The effect of the communication channel size on the transport and subsequent detection of chemical messengers is investigated on millimetric and micrometric channels. The transport of the information carriers, being characterized by an advective and a diffusive contribution, was simulated by varying the flow velocity and the diffusion coefficient. Then, to evaluate the information quality, the Intersymbol Interference (ISI) between two consecutive signals at a specific release delay was estimated. This allowed us to verify that operating under micrometric channel conditions has a larger flow velocity range to obtain completely separated successive signals and smaller release delays can be used between signals. The theoretical results were confirmed by developing a prototype molecular communication platform operating under microfluidic conditions, which enables communication through fluorescent nanoparticles, namely Carbon Quantum Dots (CQDs). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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Review

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20 pages, 6854 KiB  
Review
A Review on Metal Oxide Semiconductor-Based Chemo-Resistive Ethylene Sensors for Agricultural Applications
by Kongcan Hu, Yahan Cai, Ziru Wang, Zhengwei Zhang, Jieyu Xian and Cheng Zhang
Chemosensors 2024, 12(1), 13; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors12010013 - 12 Jan 2024
Viewed by 1443
Abstract
Ethylene, an important phytohormone, significantly influences plant growth and the ripeness of fruits and vegetables. During the transportation and storage of agricultural products, excessive ethylene can lead to economic losses due to rapid deterioration. Metal oxide semiconductor (MOS)-based chemo-resistive sensors are a promising [...] Read more.
Ethylene, an important phytohormone, significantly influences plant growth and the ripeness of fruits and vegetables. During the transportation and storage of agricultural products, excessive ethylene can lead to economic losses due to rapid deterioration. Metal oxide semiconductor (MOS)-based chemo-resistive sensors are a promising technology for the detection of ethylene due to their low cost, high sensitivity, portability, etc. This review comprehensively summarizes the materials, fabrications, agricultural applications, and sensing mechanisms of these sensors. Moreover, the current challenges are highlighted and the potential solutions are proposed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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38 pages, 6404 KiB  
Review
Fiber-Optic Nanosensors for Chemical Detection
by Vlastimil Matějec, Ivan Kašík and Ivo Bartoň
Chemosensors 2023, 11(10), 521; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11100521 - 04 Oct 2023
Viewed by 2102
Abstract
Recently, rapid progress has been achieved in the field of nanomaterial preparation and investigation. Many nanomaterials have been employed in optical chemical sensors and biosensors. This review is focused on fiber-optic nanosensors for chemical sensing based on silica and plastic optical fibers. Four [...] Read more.
Recently, rapid progress has been achieved in the field of nanomaterial preparation and investigation. Many nanomaterials have been employed in optical chemical sensors and biosensors. This review is focused on fiber-optic nanosensors for chemical sensing based on silica and plastic optical fibers. Four types of fiber-optic chemical nanosensors, namely fiber nanotip sensors, fiber nanoarray sensors, fiber-optic surface plasmon resonance sensors, and fiber-optic nanomaterial-based sensors, are discussed in the paper. The preparation, materials, and sensing characteristics of the selected fiber-optic nanosensors are employed to show the performance of such nanosensors for chemical sensing. Examples of fiber-optic nanobiosensors are also included in the paper to document the broad sensing performance of fiber-optic nanosensors. The employment of fiber-nanotips and nanoarrays for surface-enhanced Raman scattering and nanosensors employing both electrical and optical principles and “Lab-on-fiber” sensors are also included in the paper. The paper deals with fiber-optic nanosensors based on quantum dots, nanotubes, nanorods, and nanosheets of graphene materials, MoS2, and MXenes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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27 pages, 16739 KiB  
Review
Micro/Nano Soft Film Sensors for Intelligent Plant Systems: Materials, Fabrications, and Applications
by Qin Jiang, Zhiping Chai, Zisheng Zong, Zhitong Hu, Shuo Zhang and Zhigang Wu
Chemosensors 2023, 11(3), 197; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors11030197 - 19 Mar 2023
Viewed by 1975
Abstract
Being abundant as natural intelligence, plants have attracted huge attention from researchers. Soft film sensors present a novel and promising approach to connect plants with artificial devices, helping us to investigate plants’ intelligence further. Here, recent developments for micro/nano soft film sensors that [...] Read more.
Being abundant as natural intelligence, plants have attracted huge attention from researchers. Soft film sensors present a novel and promising approach to connect plants with artificial devices, helping us to investigate plants’ intelligence further. Here, recent developments for micro/nano soft film sensors that can be used for establishing intelligent plant systems are summarized, including essential materials, fabrications, and application scenarios. Conductive metals, nanomaterials, and polymers are discussed as basic materials for active layers and substrates of soft film sensors. The corresponding fabrication techniques, such as laser machining, printing, coating, and vapor deposition, have also been surveyed and discussed. Moreover, by combining soft film sensors with plants, applications for intelligent plant systems are also investigated, including plant physiology detection and plant-hybrid systems. Finally, the existing challenges and future opportunities are prospected. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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23 pages, 4577 KiB  
Review
Metal Oxide Semiconductor Nanostructure Gas Sensors with Different Morphologies
by Ali Mirzaei, Hamid Reza Ansari, Mehrdad Shahbaz, Jin-Young Kim, Hyoun Woo Kim and Sang Sub Kim
Chemosensors 2022, 10(7), 289; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10070289 - 21 Jul 2022
Cited by 38 | Viewed by 3264
Abstract
There is an increasing need for the development of low-cost and highly sensitive gas sensors for environmental, commercial, and industrial applications in various areas, such as hazardous gas monitoring, safety, and emission control in combustion processes. Considering this, resistive-based gas sensors using metal [...] Read more.
There is an increasing need for the development of low-cost and highly sensitive gas sensors for environmental, commercial, and industrial applications in various areas, such as hazardous gas monitoring, safety, and emission control in combustion processes. Considering this, resistive-based gas sensors using metal oxide semiconductors (MOSs) have gained special attention owing to their high sensing performance, high stability, and low cost of synthesis and fabrication. The relatively low final costs of these gas sensors allow their commercialization; consequently, they are widely used and available at low prices. This review focuses on the important MOSs with different morphologies, including quantum dots, nanowires, nanofibers, nanotubes, hierarchical nanostructures, and other structures for the fabrication of resistive gas sensors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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29 pages, 6262 KiB  
Review
High-Performance Room-Temperature Conductometric Gas Sensors: Materials and Strategies
by Antonio Vázquez-López, Javier Bartolomé, Ana Cremades and David Maestre
Chemosensors 2022, 10(6), 227; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10060227 - 15 Jun 2022
Cited by 8 | Viewed by 2894
Abstract
Chemiresistive sensors have gained increasing interest in recent years due to the necessity of low-cost, effective, high-performance gas sensors to detect volatile organic compounds (VOC) and other harmful pollutants. While most of the gas sensing technologies rely on the use of high operation [...] Read more.
Chemiresistive sensors have gained increasing interest in recent years due to the necessity of low-cost, effective, high-performance gas sensors to detect volatile organic compounds (VOC) and other harmful pollutants. While most of the gas sensing technologies rely on the use of high operation temperatures, which increase usage cost and decrease efficiency due to high power consumption, a particular subset of gas sensors can operate at room temperature (RT). Current approaches are aimed at the development of high-sensitivity and multiple-selectivity room-temperature sensors, where substantial research efforts have been conducted. However, fewer studies presents the specific mechanism of action on why those particular materials can work at room temperature and how to both enhance and optimize their RT performance. Herein, we present strategies to achieve RT gas sensing for various materials, such as metals and metal oxides (MOs), as well as some of the most promising candidates, such as polymers and hybrid composites. Finally, the future promising outlook on this technology is discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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33 pages, 5700 KiB  
Review
ZnO Transducers for Photoluminescence-Based Biosensors: A Review
by Joana Rodrigues, Sónia O. Pereira, Julia Zanoni, Carolina Rodrigues, Mariana Brás, Florinda M. Costa and Teresa Monteiro
Chemosensors 2022, 10(2), 39; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors10020039 - 21 Jan 2022
Cited by 12 | Viewed by 3379
Abstract
Zinc oxide (ZnO) is a wide bandgap semiconductor material that has been widely explored for countless applications, including in biosensing. Among its interesting properties, its remarkable photoluminescence (PL), which typically exhibits an intense signal at room temperature (RT), arises as an extremely appealing [...] Read more.
Zinc oxide (ZnO) is a wide bandgap semiconductor material that has been widely explored for countless applications, including in biosensing. Among its interesting properties, its remarkable photoluminescence (PL), which typically exhibits an intense signal at room temperature (RT), arises as an extremely appealing alternative transduction approach due to the high sensitivity of its surface properties, providing high sensitivity and selectivity to the sensors relying on luminescence output. Therefore, even though not widely explored, in recent years some studies have been devoted to the use of the PL features of ZnO as an optical transducer for detection and quantification of specific analytes. Hence, in the present paper, we revised the works that have been published in the last few years concerning the use of ZnO nanostructures as the transducer element in different types of PL-based biosensors, namely enzymatic and immunosensors, towards the detection of analytes relevant for health and environment, like antibiotics, glucose, bacteria, virus or even tumor biomarkers. A comprehensive discussion on the possible physical mechanisms that rule the optical sensing response is also provided, as well as a warning regarding the effect that the buffer solution may play on the sensing experiments, as it was seen that the use of phosphate-containing solutions significantly affects the stability of the ZnO nanostructures, which may conduct to misleading interpretations of the sensing results and unreliable conclusions. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Low-Cost Chemo/Bio-Sensors Based on Nanomaterials)
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