Iranian researchers from Semiconductor Devices Group of Shiraz University designed a sensor to detect hydrogen sulfide in oil drilling, oil refineries, coal mines and wells containing organic materials.
The sensor is flexible, light and portable and can be produced at low price.
Hydrogen sulfide is a hazardous gas that may lead to death depending on its concentration and emission time.
In this research, a very sensitive and flexible sensor was produced to detect hydrogen sulfide at room temperature. In addition, physical and chemical mechanisms to detect hydrogen sulfide were evaluated for this sensor in a theoretical manner by using function compressibility theory to obtain comprehensive insight about the sensor performance.
The sensor can be directly used in oil and gas industry taking into consideration the importance of hydrogen sulfide and its irreversible damages. It can also be used in aerospace and firefighting industries.
The sensor is made of carbon nanotubes covered with copper nanoparticles on a flexible bed of polyethylene terephthalate (PET). The sensor can detect hydrogen sulfide at concentration about 5ppm. It has a respond time of 10 seconds at this concentration while the return time has been obtained to be 15 seconds.
In fact, highly quick carrier transfer properties of carbon nanotubes and catalytic properties of copper in contact with hydrogen sulfide are among the main reasons for the desirable performance of the sensor.
Results of the research have been published Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical, vol. 210, issue 1, 2015, pp. 1-8.