Year of Publication

2007

Document Type

Dissertation

College

Engineering

Department

Electrical Engineering

First Advisor

Janet K. Lumpp

Abstract

A preliminary gas detection study was conducted on as-grown multi-walled carbon nanotubes and anodized aluminum oxide (MWNTs/AAO) template. The material demonstrated room temperature gas sensitivity and p-type semiconductor characteristics. Plasma-etched MWNTs/AAO templates were employed to construct capacitive gas sensors. The capacitances of the sensors were sensitive to both reducing and oxidizing gases at room temperature. Single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) dispersed in binder andamp;aacute;-terpineol were applied on sensor platforms to form resistive gas sensors. The sensors demonstrated excellent sensitivity to low concentrations of reducing and oxidizing gases at room temperature, which suggests the p-type semiconducting behavior of SWNTs. The sensor recovery was found to be incomplete at room temperature in flow of nitrogen and air, thus possible solutions were investigated to enhance sensor performance. The sensor operating principles and suggestions for possible future work are discussed. The room temperature and air background functionality of the sensor suggest that SWNT is a promising gas sensing material for application in ambient conditions.

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