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Sensors 2016, 16(11), 1917; doi:10.3390/s16111917

Polypyrrole Nanotubes and Their Carbonized Analogs: Synthesis, Characterization, Gas Sensing Properties

Department of Physics and Measurements, University of Chemistry and Technology Prague, Prague 6 CZ–166 28, Czech Republic
Centre of Polymer Systems, University Institute, Tomas Bata University in Zlin, Zlin, CZ–760 01, Czech Republic
Faculty of Mathematics and Physics, Charles University in Prague, Prague 8, CZ–180 00, Czech Republic
Institute of Macromolecular Chemistry, Academy of Sciences of the Czech Republic, Prague 6, CZ–162 06, Czech Republic
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: W. Rudolf Seitz
Received: 5 September 2016 / Revised: 7 November 2016 / Accepted: 8 November 2016 / Published: 15 November 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
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Polypyrrole (PPy) in globular form and as nanotubes were prepared by the oxidation of pyrrole with iron(III) chloride in the absence and presence of methyl orange, respectively. They were subsequently converted to nitrogen-containing carbons at 650 °C in an inert atmosphere. The course of carbonization was followed by thermogravimetric analysis and the accompanying changes in molecular structure by Fourier Transform Infrared and Raman spectroscopies. Both the original and carbonized materials have been tested in sensing of polar and non-polar organic vapors. The resistivity of sensing element using globular PPy was too high and only nanotubular PPy could be used. The sensitivity of the PPy nanotubes to ethanol vapors was nearly on the same level as that of their carbonized analogs (i.e., ~18% and 24%, respectively). Surprisingly, there was a high sensitivity of PPy nanotubes to the n-heptane vapors (~110%), while that of their carbonized analog remained at ~20%. The recovery process was significantly faster for carbonized PPy nanotubes (in order of seconds) compared with 10 s of seconds for original nanotubes, respectively, due to higher specific surface area after carbonization. View Full-Text
Keywords: polypyrrole nanotube; carbon nanotube; carbonization; functionalized nanotube; heptane detection polypyrrole nanotube; carbon nanotube; carbonization; functionalized nanotube; heptane detection

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Kopecká, J.; Mrlík, M.; Olejník, R.; Kopecký, D.; Vrňata, M.; Prokeš, J.; Bober, P.; Morávková, Z.; Trchová, M.; Stejskal, J. Polypyrrole Nanotubes and Their Carbonized Analogs: Synthesis, Characterization, Gas Sensing Properties. Sensors 2016, 16, 1917.

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