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A new platform for atmospheric monitoring

By Gerald Ondrey |

Scientists at Nanyang Technological University (NTU; Singapore; www.ntu.edu.sg) have developed a device for atmospheric monitoring that can identify a wide range of airborne gases and chemicals instantly. The prototype device is portable and suitable for rapid deployment by agencies to identify airborne hazards, such as sulfur dioxide and benzene. It can provide realtime monitoring of air quality, as well as detecting gas leaks and industrial air pollution. Developed by a research team led by associate professor Ling Xing Yi at the School of Physical and Mathematical Sciences, the new technology was reported in the September 19 issue of ACS Nano. The device is based on the principle of stand-off Raman spectroscopy (SORS), which combines the advantages of both Raman spectroscopy and remote detection to identify chemicals at inaccessible sites. Although SORS is not new, the method has been limited to the detection of pure liquids and solids due to the low concentrations of molecules that are dispersed in air. To overcome this limitation, the researchers developed a highly porous metal-organic framework (MOF) that actively absorbs and traps molecules from the air into a “cage.” Formed by the self-assembly of Ag@MOF core-shell nanoparticles,…
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