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Issue 35, 2018
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An ultrasensitive NO2 gas sensor based on a hierarchical Cu2O/CuO mesocrystal nanoflower

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Abstract

Hierarchical Cu2O/CuO mesocrystals have been fabricated by a one-step, controllable and low-power method. A novel “Etch-Oriented Self-Assembly” growth mechanism is proposed to describe the formation of hierarchical Cu2O/CuO mesocrystals. In an alkaline environment, Cu2O nanoparticles are generated first; they are then etched into small sized (14–18 nm) CuO nanocrystals which assemble in an oriented way to form Cu2O/CuO mesocrystal nano-petals. As the reaction progresses, the obtained nano-petals stagger together to construct a hierarchical nanoflower structure. All factors that may influence the morphology of the final product have been investigated. The sensing results indicate that the product at 10 h exhibits the highest sensitivity to NO2 (73 162 to 10 ppm) at room temperature. Even when the concentration of NO2 drops down to 1 ppb, the sensing response of the Cu2O/CuO-10 mesocrystals can reach 13.5. In addition, the sensor's response speed is ultra-fast and its response can increase to 2658 in 2 s when exposed to 10 ppm NO2 and recover 96% within 200 s. To study the sensor's response mechanism, the influence of pre-absorption of H2O has been studied by experiments as well as the first-principles calculations, and a rational mechanism has been put forward to explain its distinctive sensing performance.

Graphical abstract: An ultrasensitive NO2 gas sensor based on a hierarchical Cu2O/CuO mesocrystal nanoflower

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Publication details

The article was received on 11 May 2018, accepted on 05 Aug 2018 and first published on 07 Aug 2018


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C8TA04404J
Citation: J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018,6, 17120-17131
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    An ultrasensitive NO2 gas sensor based on a hierarchical Cu2O/CuO mesocrystal nanoflower

    J. Hu, C. Zou, Y. Su, M. Li, Y. Han, E. S. Kong, Z. Yang and Y. Zhang, J. Mater. Chem. A, 2018, 6, 17120
    DOI: 10.1039/C8TA04404J

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