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Sensors 2017, 17(4), 929; doi:10.3390/s17040929

A Miniature Aerosol Sensor for Detecting Polydisperse Airborne Ultrafine Particles

State Key Laboratory of Precision Measurement Technology and Instrument, Department of Precision Instrument, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
Institute of Nuclear and New Energy Technology, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China
School of Mechanical Engineering, University of Science and Technology Beijing, Beijing 100083, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: W. Rudolf Seitz
Received: 24 February 2017 / Revised: 27 March 2017 / Accepted: 20 April 2017 / Published: 22 April 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Chemical Sensors)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [4162 KB, uploaded 24 April 2017]   |  


Counting and sizing of polydisperse airborne nanoparticles have attracted most attentions owing to increasing widespread presence of airborne engineered nanoparticles or ultrafine particles. Here we report a miniature aerosol sensor to detect particle size distribution of polydisperse ultrafine particles based on ion diffusion charging and electrical detection. The aerosol sensor comprises a couple of planar electrodes printed on two circuit boards assembled in parallel, where charging, precipitation and measurement sections are integrated into one chip, which can detect aerosol particle size in of 30–500 nm, number concentration in range of 5 × 102 – 5 × 107 /cm3. The average relative errors of the measured aerosol number concentration and the particle size are estimated to be 12.2% and 13.5% respectively. A novel measurement scheme is proposed to actualize a real-time detection of polydisperse particles by successively modulating the measurement voltage and deducing the particle size distribution through a smart data fusion algorithm. The effectiveness of the aerosol sensor is experimentally demonstrated via measurements of polystyrene latex (PSL) aerosol and nucleic acid aerosol, as well as sodium chloride aerosol particles. View Full-Text
Keywords: aerosol sensor; polydisperse ultrafine particle; size distribution; electrical detection; data fusion algorithm aerosol sensor; polydisperse ultrafine particle; size distribution; electrical detection; data fusion algorithm

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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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Zhang, C.; Wang, D.; Zhu, R.; Yang, W.; Jiang, P. A Miniature Aerosol Sensor for Detecting Polydisperse Airborne Ultrafine Particles. Sensors 2017, 17, 929.

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