Electrochemical sensor based on multi-walled carbon nanotubes for imidacloprid determination
A simple and robust sensor (fMWCNT–Nafion®0.5%/GCE) for determination of imidacloprid (IMI), a widely used neonicotinoid, was developed using a glassy carbon electrode (GCE) modified with functionalized multi-walled carbon nanotubes (fMWCNT) and Nafion®. The obtained data suggest that IMI reduction is an irreversible process, due to the reduction of the nitro group to hydroxylamine derivatives, with the participation of two protons and four electrons, and a charge transfer coefficient of 0.141. The optimized square-wave voltammetric conditions were: McIlvaine buffer at pH 6.0, 0.5% of Nafion® in the fMWCNT suspension, −0.6 V and 180 s as accumulation potential and time, respectively. A linearity in the range of 2.00 × 10−7 to 1.77 × 10−6 mol L−1 IMI, with the values of limit of detection and limit of quantification were equal to 3.74 × 10−8 mol L−1 and 1.25 × 10−7 mol L−1, respectively. Repeatability and reproducibility displayed relative standard deviations lower than 5%. Recovery tests performed in tap water, melon, and shrimp yielded mean values of 94 ± 6%, 97 ± 10% and 93 ± 10%, respectively. Moreover, several inorganic and organic compounds did not significantly interfere (0.6 to 4.5%) on the IMI signal, proving the selectivity and applicability of the developed sensor for IMI detection in complex samples.