Nanotechnology-Enhanced Sensor for Toxic Industrial Chemicals

Period of Performance: 01/31/2008 - 08/22/2008


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Streamline Automation, LLC
3100 Fresh Way SW Array
Huntsville, AL 35805
Principal Investigator


Chlorine gas was first used as a weapon during World War I and has reemerged as a threat in Iraq compounding the dangers from existing improvised explosive devices. One of the significant challenges with preventing attacks that involve toxic industrial chemicals (TICs) like chlorine, ammonia is that they have genuine civilian uses for water treatment, in refrigeration systems, and others, that makes it impossible to outlaw their sale and possession. In order to address this, Streamline Automation proposes to develop a thin-film voltammetric gas sensor that utilizes nano-scale features to enhance sensitivity to TICs. This will involve doping the sensor materials with catalysts that enhance reactions with specific chemicals of interest through techniques such as ion implantation. The use of thin-film fabrication techniques will enable an array of voltammetric sensing cells to be laid down in a very small area and tailored to the detection of a range of TICs. The Phase 1 effort will focus on demonstrating that a thin-film sensor behaves as expected with the addition of a dopant, and on identifying candidate dopants for several High Hazard TICs.