Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Zinc Oxide as a gas sensor

  1. Jul 1, 2012 #1
    I am just confuse about zinc oxide being a gas sensor. What I am implying is that why it can detect gases such as methane and C2H5OH? What are the properties of ZnO as a gas sensor?and what is the physics behind this gas detection?
  2. jcsd
  3. Jul 1, 2012 #2


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member

    Where have you seen it used as a gas sensor? I'm not saying it isn't possible or even commonplace.
  4. Jul 2, 2012 #3


    User Avatar
    Science Advisor

    I do not know whether it is what you are looking for, but I remember having seen nanostructures used for gas sensing and one of the materials used was ZnO.

    However, in such cases it is rather the structure that defines the sensing properties rather than the choice of the bulk material. Typically people create nanowires or microresonators and their conductivity or resonance frequency undergo a characteristic change as soon as the adsorbed oxygen concentration on their surface changes, which is an indicator of whether oxidizing or reducing gases are present.
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook