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3,4-Hydroxypyridinone-modified carbon quantum dot as a highly sensitive and selective fluorescent probe for the rapid detection of uranyl ions

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Abstract

Although a variety of analysis techniques have been established and developed for uranium detection in aqueous solution, there is still an urgent need for a new technique that can be utilized for the on-site and instant monitoring of uranium concentration, particularly during a nuclear accident that requires an ultrafast response. Traditional analysis techniques suffer from the clear demerit of the relatively long time needed for an accurate detection. Herein, we report a solution to this challenge by developing a 3,4-hydroxypyridinone-functionalized carbon quantum dot (HOPO-CQD), which can be used as a fluorescent probe for the almost instant monitoring of uranyl ions. The developed probe exhibited an excellent sensitivity (limit of detection, 6.53 ppb), a high selectivity towards uranyl ions, and an extremely short response time (30 s). The excellent uranyl detection performance of the HOPO-CQDs originated from the strong and specific interaction between the HOPO ligand and the uranyl ion, leading to a unique uranyl-induced aggregation of the carbon quantum dots. This phenomenon is highly selective to uranyl ions and is attractive for further separation applications. This is the first time that post-modified CQDs are employed for the in situ, real-time detection of uranyl ions in aqueous solutions, with a promising potential for practical applications in the near future.

Graphical abstract: 3,4-Hydroxypyridinone-modified carbon quantum dot as a highly sensitive and selective fluorescent probe for the rapid detection of uranyl ions

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Publication details

The article was received on 04 Feb 2019, accepted on 15 Mar 2019 and first published on 20 Mar 2019


Article type: Paper
DOI: 10.1039/C9EN00148D
Citation: Environ. Sci.: Nano, 2019, Advance Article

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    3,4-Hydroxypyridinone-modified carbon quantum dot as a highly sensitive and selective fluorescent probe for the rapid detection of uranyl ions

    Z. Zhang, D. Zhang, C. Shi, W. Liu, L. Chen, Y. Miao, J. Diwu, J. Li and S. Wang, Environ. Sci.: Nano, 2019, Advance Article , DOI: 10.1039/C9EN00148D

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