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Sensor pasivo para detectar compuestos volátiles de azufre

Resumen

Tipo:
Oferta Tecnológica
Referencia:
TOES20161020002
Publicado:
24/10/2016
Caducidad:
24/10/2017
Resumen:
Un grupo de investigación español ha desarrollado un sensor colorimétrico pasivo sencillo y fácil de usar con límites de detección bajos y buena selectividad (45 mg/m3) para la detección in situ y monitorización en tiempo real de compuestos volátiles de azufre en atmósferas reales. Este sensor puede emplearse para detectar el mal aliento responsable de la halitosis o con fines de control ambiental en lugares críticos. El sensor es pasivo y no necesita pretratamiento, fuente de alimentación ni instrumentación externa. La universidad busca fabricantes o distribuidores de sensores de detección de compuestos volátiles con el fin de establecer acuerdos de licencia y cooperación técnica.

Details

Tittle:
Passive sensor for detection of volatile sulfur compounds
Summary:
A Spanish research group has developed a simple and easy-to-use passive colorimetric sensor with low detection limits and (45 mg/m3) good selectivity for in situ detection and real time monitoring of volatile sulfur compounds in real atmospheres. It can be used to detect bad bread or for environmental control purposes in critical locations. The university is interested in license and technical cooperation agreement with producers or distributors of sensors for volatile compounds detection.
Description:
Volatile sulfur compounds such as hydrogen sulfide (H2S), methyl mercaptan (CH3SH) and dimethyl sulfide ((CH3)2S) are toxic gases, harmful to the environment and health. The main amounts of hydrogen sulfide and other volatile sulfur compounds are generated as a result of industrial activities such as processing and refining of oil / natural gas, wastewater treatment plants, landfills, etc. They also can be found in biological samples, such as breath, being responsible of halitosis.
For the determination of volatile sulfur compounds in situ and in real time, one possibility is to use active sampling techniques such as commercial colorimetric tubes. These dispositives require an external source of energy, thus an additional cost of energy and money needs to be considered.
Regarding passive sensors, few options exist for detecting volatile sulfur compounds and all have drawbacks such as excessively high detection limits, low reproducibility or the toxicity of the reagents employed. For halitosis detection a halitometer is used, which is a portable instrument that measures quantitatively the volatile sulfur compounds found in the mouth but it is inaccessible to the consumer due to their high cost.

Researchers from a Spanish university have developed a passive colorimetric sensor for in situ detection of volatile sulfur compounds with detection limits of 45 ppb (part per billion = mg/m3), making it suitable to use in the detection of sulfur compounds in real atmospheres. The sensor is passive, so it does not need any pretreatment, or power supply or external instrument. The sensor is further characterized by its safety to the environment, its stability against a wide range of temperatures and to humidity and solar radiation, and its resistance to reversion, so that the sensor response is stable over time. The sensor is useful for the determination of volatile sulfur compounds in any type of matrix in which volatile sulfur compounds are present or generated, allows in situ and in real time monitoring and with good sensitivity. Moreover, the sensor has an appropriate selectivity since other volatile compounds such as amines, ethanol or acetone have been found not to interfere with the detection. Once the sensor is colored, the color intensity can be monitored by i) visual inspection, ii) digital analysis of the values of red, green and blue (RGB) from a photograph of the sensor obtained by a recording device or image capture as a mobile phone, iii) absorbance measurement by diffuse reflectance.

The sensor developed is applicable as in situ method for:
- the detection of bad breath that may be associated with periodontitis or gingivitis
- environmental control systems for the detection of hydrogen sulfide in critical locations (wastewater treatment plants, landfills, drains, pipes, oil processing, etc

The companies looked for should be active in the production and/or distribution of sensors for detection of volatile compounds. The university is mainly interested in license agreement, including testing of applications, adaptation to specific needs, production and marketing. However, the research group are also open to technical cooperation agreement to further develope their sensor.
Advantages and Innovations:
The most innovative aspect of this invention is that allows in situ and in real time monitoring of volatile sulfur compounds.

While, the main advantages provided by the invention are:
- Simplicity and ease of use: it is a passive colorimetric sensor that does not require any kind of pretreatment or power supply or external instrument.
- Low cost: simple fabrication process without high costs
- Low detection limits: of the order of 45 ppb v/v. Other instruments in the market have orders of magnitude on the parts per million range (mg/L)
- Quantitative detection: direct quantitative detection can be carried out by diffuse reflectance of the sensors.
- Stability: the sensor remains stable for a period of 3 months. Reversion resistance.
- In situ and in real time monitoring: the response of the sensor is obtained in just 10 minutes.
Stage of Development:
Under development/lab tested
IPs:
Patent(s) applied for but not yet granted
CommeR Statunts Regarding IPR Status:
Spanish patent application

Partner sought

Type and Role of Partner Sought:
Enterprise in the specific area of sensing, scientific instrumentation, industrial safety, public safety, etc., for licensing the invention, testing of applications, adaptation to specific needs, production and marketing.

Client

Type and Size of Client:
University
Already Engaged in Trans-National Cooperation:
No
Languages Spoken:
English
Spanish

Keywords

Technology Keywords:
10002008 Medición y detección de la contaminación
05001001 Química analítica
09001009 Tecnología de sensores relacionada con la realización de medidas