479934 Wearable Sensor Comprised of Nafion/Single-Walled Carbon Nanotubes/Metal Oxide Nanoparticles for the Detection and Catalyzation of Chemical Warfare Agents

Monday, November 14, 2016
Grand Ballroom B (Hilton San Francisco Union Square)
Kenneth Zong, Chemical and Biochemical Engineering, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, Piscataway, NJ

Forthcoming threats of secretive chemical warfare agents (CWA) such as phosphororganic nerve agents brought about developments in wearable sensors that can detect, block, and detoxify these toxic organophosphorus compounds. Fabricating composite membranes with the DuPont-developed polyelectrolyte polymer, Nafion, metal oxide nanoparticles, and graphene prove useful to detect and detoxify CWA. The aim of this project is two-fold: First is the development of a self-detoxifying catalytic-protective membrane capable of decomposing CWA and allowing diffusion of water due to perspiration. The metal oxide nanoparticles act as the catalyst and are grown in-situ the polyelectrolyte membranes. The second is to incorporate conductive materials, such as graphene, so that these membranes can also act as sensors. Recently, we are pursuing cheaper, alternative conductive properties by using graphene instead of carbon nanotubes. We prepare thin, flexible films of a graphene solution with the elastomer, SEBS. We would then use X-Ray Diffraction, Raman spectroscopy, and Scanning Electron Microscopy methods to characterize and examine what kinds of crystal planes are present in the nanoparticles. So far, we have found that we are able to successfully produce metal oxide nanoparticles in a Nafion polymer template. Herein, we study the variables that affect the flow of charge through the sensors. We seek to develop a model that describes the relationship between the concentration of CWA bound and the change in resistance of the sensor. Ultimately, we want to construct a breathable membrane that can catalyze and detect CWA but will be a more versatile wearable monitoring sensor.

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