Ormosil Nanocomposite-Based Unattended, Field-Deployable and Reversible Optical Sensor for Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide
Reliable information is needed to assess the effect of carbon sequestration by the global biosphere and its impact on climate change. However, the prediction of carbon sources/sinks, using the atmospheric carbon dioxide inversion method, is currently limited by the availability of high-precision carbon dioxide measurements, which in turn is constrained by high instrument cost and maintenance difficulties. This project will remove this bottleneck by developing a simple, inexpensive, and longer-lasting carbon dioxide sensor, which not only is suitable for autonomous measurements in the field but also exhibits specifications that match larger and expensive research instruments. Phase I will establish feasibility by constructing a working model of the device. High signal-to-noise ratio will be obtained by utilizing ratiometric measurements for achieving a resolution of 1 part in 3000 or better. Sensor performance will be characterized with respect to long-term drift, sensitivity, accuracy, resolution, and lack of interference from smog components such as sulfur dioxide. Commercial Applications And Other Benefits as described by the Applicant: An autonomous system for long term deployment would be applicable to DOE's ecological and environmental research programs for measuring greenhouse gases in media such as the atmosphere, biosphere, soi,l and ocean water. The sensor platform also should be adaptable to the analysis of other trace gases (including ammonia, oxides of nitrogen and sulfur and carbon monoxide) when appropriate indicators are incorporated. Commercial arenas for the technology include trace gas monitoring, pollution monitoring, and industrial process monitoring.
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