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Issue 41, 2010
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Synthesis of Cu-doped WO3 materials with photonic structures for high performance sensors

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Abstract

Cu-doped photonic crystal (PC) WO3 replicas from Morpho butterfly wings have been prepared by using a combined sol–gel templating and calcination method. The exact replications in the Cu-doped PC WO3 replicas at the micro- and nanoscales were confirmed by scanning electronic microscopy (SEM) and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). A combination of X-ray diffraction (XRD), energy-dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX), Raman and X-ray photoelectron spectra (XPS) measurements revealed that copper does not form clusters, but is randomly distributed inside the WO3 matrix lattice. The optical properties of the Cu-doped PC WO3 replica as well as the Morpho butterfly wing template were investigated by using reflectance spectroscopy, and it was found that the reflected light chromaticity of the Cu-doped PC WO3 replica was inherited from the PC Morpho butterfly wings. Cu-doped WO3 replicas without photonic crystal structures (Cu-W replica) were also fabricated in the same way as the Cu-doped PC WO3 replica but using Euploea mulciber butterfly wings as the template. Chemical sensors fabricated from the Cu-doped PC WO3 as well as the non-PC Cu-doped WO3 replicas were tested for a range of gases: (CH3)3N (TMA), NH3, C2H5OH, HCHO, CH3OH, acetone, H2, CO and NO2 and they showed a high selectivity for TMA. The sensitivity of the Cu-doped PC WO3 replica sensors can reach up to 2.0 for a trimethylamine concentration as low as 0.5 ppm at 290 °C. The high sensitivity of the Cu-doped WO3 replica sensors to TMA is attributed to the catalytic effect of Cu on the reaction between the testing gas and the oxide surface. Furthermore, the Cu-doped PC WO3 replica sensor is twice as sensitive as the Cu-doped non-PC WO3 replica to trimethylamine. This may be explained by the photonic crystal structure of the Cu-doped PC WO3.

Graphical abstract: Synthesis of Cu-doped WO3 materials with photonic structures for high performance sensors

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Article information


Submitted
04 Jul 2010
Accepted
24 Aug 2010
First published
20 Sep 2010

J. Mater. Chem., 2010,20, 9126-9132
Article type
Paper

Synthesis of Cu-doped WO3 materials with photonic structures for high performance sensors

S. Zhu, X. Liu, Z. Chen, C. Liu, C. Feng, J. Gu, Q. Liu and D. Zhang, J. Mater. Chem., 2010, 20, 9126
DOI: 10.1039/C0JM02113J

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