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New microsensor measures volatile organic compounds in water and air on-site
Date:9/17/2007

e have not achieved the required sensitivity yet, we are constantly making improvements.

Brand and Mizaikoff have tested their sensor device in the laboratory by pumping water with specific pollutant concentrations through a simple flow cell device attached to the sensor.

A typical test begins by flowing a water sample containing a known amount of pollutant over a sensor coated with a polymer membrane. When the sample flows through the cell, the mass of the microstructure increases, causing its characteristic vibration frequency, or resonance frequency, to decrease. By monitoring this resonance frequency over time, Brand and Mizaikoff can detect the amount of aromatic hydrocarbons such as benzene present in water.

The researchers plan to run field trials to investigate the use of this new microsensor in aqueous and gaseous environments for rapid on-site screening of multiple pollutants.

With benzene and other VOCs high on the EPA priority pollutant list, it would be a major advantage to get a rapid reading of VOC concentrations directly in the field, said Mizaikoff.


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Contact: John Toon
jtoon@gatech.edu
404-894-6986
Georgia Institute of Technology Research News
Source:Eurekalert

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