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Open AccessArticle

Nitrogen-Rich Polyacrylonitrile-Based Graphitic Carbons for Hydrogen Peroxide Sensing

1
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
2
Irvine Materials Research Institute (IMRI), University of California, Irvine, CA 92697, USA
3
Department of Mechanical Engineering, California State University, Fresno, CA 93740, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Sensors 2017, 17(10), 2407; https://doi.org/10.3390/s17102407
Received: 15 August 2017 / Revised: 15 September 2017 / Accepted: 17 October 2017 / Published: 21 October 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advanced Sensors Based on Carbon Electrodes)
Catalytic substrate, which is devoid of expensive noble metals and enzymes for hydrogen peroxide (H2O2), reduction reactions can be obtained via nitrogen doping of graphite. Here, we report a facile fabrication method for obtaining such nitrogen doped graphitized carbon using polyacrylonitrile (PAN) mats and its use in H2O2 sensing. A high degree of graphitization was obtained with a mechanical treatment of the PAN fibers embedded with carbon nanotubes (CNT) prior to the pyrolysis step. The electrochemical testing showed a limit of detection (LOD) 0.609 µM and sensitivity of 2.54 µA cm−2 mM−1. The promising sensing performance of the developed carbon electrodes can be attributed to the presence of high content of pyridinic and graphitic nitrogens in the pyrolytic carbons, as confirmed by X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. The reported results suggest that, despite their simple fabrication, the hydrogen peroxide sensors developed from pyrolytic carbon nanofibers are comparable with their sophisticated nitrogen-doped graphene counterparts. View Full-Text
Keywords: hydrogen peroxide sensing; polyacrylonitrile; graphitization; electrospinning; graphitic nitrogen; pyridinic nitrogen hydrogen peroxide sensing; polyacrylonitrile; graphitization; electrospinning; graphitic nitrogen; pyridinic nitrogen
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MDPI and ACS Style

Pollack, B.; Holmberg, S.; George, D.; Tran, I.; Madou, M.; Ghazinejad, M. Nitrogen-Rich Polyacrylonitrile-Based Graphitic Carbons for Hydrogen Peroxide Sensing. Sensors 2017, 17, 2407.

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