Bangalore Scientists Develop Electronic Nose To Detect Poisonous And Flammable Hydrogen Sulphide Gas Produced From SewersSewer pipe line construction in Mumbai. (representative image) (Kunal Patil/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

Scientists from the Centre for Nano and Soft Matter Sciences (CeNS), Bangalore, have developed an electronic nose with biodegradable polymer and monomer that can detect hydrogen sulphide (H2S), a poisonous, corrosive, and flammable gas produced from swamps and sewers.

H2S is the primary gas produced from the microbial breakdown of organic matter in the absence of oxygen, and this necessitates easy detection of its emission from sewers and swamps, the Ministry of Science and Technology said in a statement.

Responding to this challenge, scientists from CeNS an autonomous institute of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India, in collaboration with their counterparts from Saudi Arabia, have developed an exceptionally sensitive and selective H2S Gas sensor developed by impersonating the neuron responsible for identification of airborne molecules or olfactory receptor neuron (ORN).

The impersonation of ORN with the help of an organic electronic device consisting of biodegradable polymer and monomer under Dr Channabasaveshwar Yelamaggad from CeNS and Prof Khaled N. Salama, Sensors lab, Advanced Membranes, and Porous Materials Center, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), Saudi Arabia has been published in the journals ‘Materials Horizon’ and ‘Advanced Electronic Materials’ recently.

The capacitance sensor (a sensor that detects nearby objects by their effect on the electrical field created by the sensor) developed by the scientists showed an excellent sensitivity in detecting H2S gas with an experimental limit of detection of around 25 parts per billion. It also has high ambient stability of around eight months without compromising sensing performance.

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