A compact oxygen sensor is provided, comprising a mixture of metal and metal oxide an enclosure containing said mixture, said enclosure capable of isolating said mixture from an environment external of said enclosure, and a first wire having a first end residing within the enclosure and having a second end exposed to the environment. Also provided is a method for the fabrication of an oxygen sensor, the method comprising confining a metal-metal oxide solid mixture to a container which consists of a single material permeable to oxygen ions, supplying an electrical conductor having a first end and a second end, whereby the first end resides inside the container as a reference (PO.sub.2).sup.ref, and the second end resides outside the container in the atmosphere where oxygen partial pressure (PO.sub.2).sup.ext is to be measured, and sealing the container with additional single material such that grain boundary sliding occurs between grains of the single material and grains of the additional single material.
CONTRACTUAL ORIGIN OF INVENTION
The United States Government has rights in this invention pursuant to Contract No. W-31-109-ENG-38 between the U.S. Department of Energy and the University of Chicago, representing Argonne National Laboratory, and also pursuant to Award No. DE-FC26-03NT41615 between the U.S. Department of Energy and Ohio State University.