A Love-wave device with graphene oxide (GO) as sensitive layer has been developed for the detection of chemical warfare agent (CWA) simulants. Sensitive films were fabricated by airbrushing GO dispersions onto Love-wave devices. The resulting Love-wave sensors detected very low CWA simulant concentrations in synthetic air at room temperature (as low as 0.2 ppm for dimethyl-methylphosphonate, DMMP, a simulant of sarin nerve gas, and 0.75 ppm for dipropylene glycol monomethyl ether, DPGME, a simulant of nitrogen mustard). High responses to DMMP and DPGME were obtained with sensitivities of 3087 and 760 Hz/ppm respectively. Very low limit of detection (LOD) values (9 and 40 ppb for DMMP and DPGME, respectively) were calculated from the achieved experimental data. The sensor exhibited outstanding sensitivity, good linearity and repeatability to all simulants tested. The detection mechanism is here explained in terms of hydrogen bonding formation between the tested CWA simulants and GO.
This work has been supported by the Spanish Science and Innovation Ministry under project TEC2013-C6-4-R, and by EPSRC. The authors wish to thank Dr. C. Cané and Dr. I. Gràcia from the Centro Nacional de Microelectrónica IMB-CSIC for providing the micro-machined SAW substrates.