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Apparatus for sensing volatile organic chemicals in fluids

United States Patent

June 7, 2005
View the Complete Patent at the US Patent & Trademark Office
Sandia National Laboratories - Visit the Intellectual Property Management and Licensing Website
A chemical-sensing apparatus is formed from the combination of a chemical preconcentrator which sorbs and concentrates particular volatile organic chemicals (VOCs) and one or more chemiresistors that sense the VOCs after the preconcentrator has been triggered to release them in concentrated form. Use of the preconcentrator and chemiresistor(s) in combination allows the VOCs to be detected at lower concentration than would be possible using the chemiresistor(s) alone and further allows measurements to be made in a variety of fluids, including liquids (e.g. groundwater). Additionally, the apparatus provides a new mode of operation for sensing VOCs based on the measurement of decay time constants, and a method for background correction to improve measurement precision.
Hughes; Robert C. (Albuquerque, NM), Manginell; Ronald P. (Albuquerque, NM), Jenkins; Mark W. (Albuquerque, NM), Kottenstette; Richard (Albuquerque, NM), Patel; Sanjay V. (San Diego, CA)
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM)
09/ 974,327
October 9, 2001
GOVERNMENT RIGHTS This invention was made with Government support under Contract No. DE-AC04-94AL85000 awarded by the U.S. Department of Energy. The Government has certain rights in the invention.