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Sensors 2016, 16(4), 501; doi:10.3390/s16040501

A Low Cost Compact Measurement System Constructed Using a Smart Electrochemical Sensor for the Real-Time Discrimination of Fruit Ripening

1
Department of Electrical Engineering, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou 450002, China
2
State Key Laboratory of Wheat and Maize Crop Science, Zhengzhou 450002, China
3
School of Human Nutrition and Dietetics, McGill University, Macdonald Campus, 21, 111 Lakeshore Road, Ste Anne de Bellevue, QC H9X 3V9, Canada
4
College of Life Sciences, Henan Agricultural University, Zhengzhou 450002, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Spas D. Kolev
Received: 26 January 2016 / Revised: 3 April 2016 / Accepted: 5 April 2016 / Published: 8 April 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [1915 KB, uploaded 8 April 2016]   |  

Abstract

Ethylene as an indicator for evaluating fruit ripening can be measured by very sensitive electrochemical gas sensors based on a high-resolution current produced by a bias potential applied to the electrodes. For this purpose, a measurement system for monitoring ethylene gas concentrations to evaluate fruit ripening by using the electrochemical ethylene sensor was successfully developed. Before the electrochemical ethylene sensor was used to measure the ethylene gas concentrations released from fruits, a calibration curve was established by the standard ethylene gases at concentrations of 2.99 ppm, 4.99 ppm, 8.01 ppm and 10 ppm, respectively, with a flow rate of 0.4 L·min−1. From the calibration curve, the linear relationship between the responses and concentrations of ethylene gas was obtained in the range of 0–10 ppm with the correlation coefficient R2 of 0.9976. The micropump and a novel signal conditioning circuit were implemented in this measurement, resulting in a rapid response in detecting ethylene concentrations down to 0.1 ppm in air and in under 50 s. In this experiment, three kinds of fruits—apples, pears and kiwifruits—were studied at a low concentration (under 0.8 ppm) of trace ethylene content in the air exhaled by fruits. The experimental results showed that a low cost, compact measurement system constructed by using an electrochemical ethylene sensor has a high sensitivity of 0.3907 V·ppm−1 with a theoretical detection limit of 0.413 ppm, and is non-invasive and highly portable. View Full-Text
Keywords: ethylene gas; micropump; electrochemical sensor; fruit ripening; non-invasive ethylene gas; micropump; electrochemical sensor; fruit ripening; non-invasive
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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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MDPI and ACS Style

Ma, L.; Wang, L.; Chen, R.; Chang, K.; Wang, S.; Hu, X.; Sun, X.; Lu, Z.; Sun, H.; Guo, Q.; Jiang, M.; Hu, J. A Low Cost Compact Measurement System Constructed Using a Smart Electrochemical Sensor for the Real-Time Discrimination of Fruit Ripening. Sensors 2016, 16, 501.

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