Alcohol Recognition by Flexible, Transparent and Highly Sensitive Graphene-Based Thin-Film Sensors

Xuezhu Xu, Jian Zhou, Yangyang Xin, Gilles Lubineau, Qian Ma, Long Jiang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

30 Scopus citations


Chemical sensors detect a variety of chemicals across numerous fields, such as automobile, aerospace, safety, indoor air quality, environmental control, food, industrial production and medicine. We successfully assemble an alcohol-sensing device comprising a thin-film sensor made of graphene nanosheets (GNs) and bacterial cellulose nanofibers (BCNs). We show that the GN/BCN sensor has a high selectivity to ethanol by distinguishing liquid-phase or vapor-phase ethanol (C2H6O) from water (H2O) intelligently with accurate transformation into electrical signals in devices. The BCN component of the film amplifies the ethanol sensitivity of the film, whereby the GN/BCN sensor has 12400% sensitivity for vapor-phase ethanol compared to the pure GN sensor, which has only 21% sensitivity. Finally, GN/BCN sensors demonstrate fast response/recovery times and a wide range of alcohol detection (10-100%). The superior sensing ability of GN/BCN compared to GNs alone is due to the improved wettability of BCNs and the ionization of liquids. We prove a facile, green, low-cost route for the assembly of ethanol-sensing devices with potential for vast application.
Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalScientific Reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jun 28 2017


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