The researchers at Amirkabir University of Technology and the University of Tehran developed a highly efficient method for the modification of carbon electrodes which enables them to detect silver ions down to picomolar concentrations.
The new method also lengthens the lifetime of carbon electrodes by up to 12 months. One of the most important methods for modification of porous solids and increase of their selectivity is functionalizing them by organic compounds.
These functionalized porous materials are used in catalysts, separation processes, chemical modification of chemical sensors etc. Novel methods applied for the production of porous silica gels lead to a size distribution of 2 to 10 nanometers of pores. These nanopores bring about a high specific surface area of 500 to 1500 m2/g which provides unique properties for the relevant materials.
"The measurement of silver ion was simply made by designing a modified electrode based on nanostructured materials which is differentiated by its detection range. It is often crucial to have very high precision measurements in industry," Mehran Javanbakht, one of the researchers told the news service of INIC.
Javanbakht pointed to an example, noting, "the concentration of silver ion in ocean and sea waters is in the range of picomolar which is not directly measurable by any means but the proposed method. In general, the mentioned electrodes are used in electrochemical sensors which have applications in medical, chemical, environmental, defensive, water and wastewater industries.”
“In the present research the minimum lifetime of electrodes was revealed to be 12 months that makes them promising to be commercialized”, he added.
The details of the present study are available at Electrochimica Acta, volume 54, pages 5381 to 5386, 2009