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Sensors 2014, 14(8), 14586-14600; doi:10.3390/s140814586

Enhanced Ethanol Gas Sensing Properties of SnO2-Core/ZnO-Shell Nanostructures

1
Department of Mechanical Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Malaya, Kuala Lumpur 50603, Malaysia
2
Center for Industrial Sensors and Measurements (CISM), Department of Materials Science and Engineering, Ohio State University, 2041 College Road, Columbus, OH 43210, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 21 July 2014 / Revised: 4 August 2014 / Accepted: 5 August 2014 / Published: 11 August 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
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Abstract

An inexpensive single-step carbon-assisted thermal evaporation method for the growth of SnO2-core/ZnO-shell nanostructures is described, and the ethanol sensing properties are presented. The structure and phases of the grown nanostructures are investigated by field-emission scanning electron microscopy (FESEM), transmission electron microscopy (TEM) and X-ray diffraction (XRD) techniques. XRD analysis indicates that the core-shell nanostructures have good crystallinity. At a lower growth duration of 15 min, only SnO2 nanowires with a rectangular cross-section are observed, while the ZnO shell is observed when the growth time is increased to 30 min. Core-shell hierarchical nanostructures are present for a growth time exceeding 60 min. The growth mechanism for SnO2-core/ZnO-shell nanowires and hierarchical nanostructures are also discussed. The sensitivity of the synthesized SnO2-core/ZnO-shell nanostructures towards ethanol sensing is investigated. Results show that the SnO2-core/ZnO-shell nanostructures deposited at 90 min exhibit enhanced sensitivity to ethanol. The sensitivity of SnO2-core/ZnO-shell nanostructures towards 20 ppm ethanol gas at 400 °C is about ~5-times that of SnO2 nanowires. This improvement in ethanol gas response is attributed to high active sensing sites and the synergistic effect of the encapsulation of SnO2 by ZnO nanostructures. View Full-Text
Keywords: ethanol gas sensor; ZnO; SnO2; core-shell nanostructures; hierarchical nanostructures ethanol gas sensor; ZnO; SnO2; core-shell nanostructures; hierarchical nanostructures
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Tharsika, T.; Haseeb, A.S.M.A.; Akbar, S.A.; Sabri, M.F.M.; Hoong, W.Y. Enhanced Ethanol Gas Sensing Properties of SnO2-Core/ZnO-Shell Nanostructures. Sensors 2014, 14, 14586-14600.

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