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Smartphone Coupled with a Paper-Based Colorimetric Device for Sensitive and Portable Mercury Ion Sensing

1
Graduate School of Science Education, University of Bengkulu, Bengkulu 38371, Indonesia
2
Material Science Research Group, Universitas BSI, Bandung 40291, Indonesia
3
Institute of Nuclear Physics, Uzbek Academy of Sciences, Tashkent 100214, Uzbekistan
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Chemosensors 2019, 7(2), 25; https://doi.org/10.3390/chemosensors7020025
Received: 8 April 2019 / Revised: 10 May 2019 / Accepted: 13 May 2019 / Published: 17 May 2019
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Abstract

The rapid development of information and communication technology provides an opportunity for scientists to develop a quantitative analytical method that is built on a mobile gadget as a detector. In this paper, we report a low-cost, simple and portable analytical method for mercury ion quantification based on digital image colorimetry coupled with a smartphone application. A small amount of silver nanoparticles (AgNPs) was used as a colorimetric agent that is selective only to mercury ions. The yellowish brown color of AgNPs instantly changed to colorless after the addition of mercury ions due to a redox reaction. To increase the portability, we attached the AgNPs onto a medium to create a paper-based analytical device. The final data processing of the colorimetric analysis was conducted using an android application available on the Google Play Store, called “Mercury Detector”. The proposed method has good sensitivity, with a detection limit of 0.86 ppb, which is comparable to those of bulk and more expensive instruments. This allows for the detection of mercury ions as low as 2 ppb (10 nM), which is also the maximum contaminant level permitted in drinking water by the US Environmental Protection Agency. The proposed method was applied to real samples that provide satisfactory results on accuracy (2.4%) and precision (2.5%). View Full-Text
Keywords: mercury; toxic metal; silver nanoparticles; colorimetry; spectrophotometry; digital image; smartphone application; paper-based analytical device mercury; toxic metal; silver nanoparticles; colorimetry; spectrophotometry; digital image; smartphone application; paper-based analytical device
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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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Firdaus, M.L.; Aprian, A.; Meileza, N.; Hitsmi, M.; Elvia, R.; Rahmidar, L.; Khaydarov, R. Smartphone Coupled with a Paper-Based Colorimetric Device for Sensitive and Portable Mercury Ion Sensing. Chemosensors 2019, 7, 25.

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