A graphene/TiS3 heterojunction for resistive sensing of polar vapors at room temperature


The room temperature polar vapor sensing behavior of a graphene-TiS3 heterojunction material and TiS3 nanoribbons is described. The nanoribbons were synthesized via chemical vapor transport (CVT) and their structure was investigated by scanning electron microscopy, high resolution transmission electron microscopy, energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy, X-ray diffraction, Raman and Fourier transform infrared spectroscopies. The gas sensing performance was assessed by following the changes in their resistivities. Sensing devices were fabricated with gold contacts and with lithographically patterned graphene (Gr) electrodes in a heterojunction Gr-TiS3-Gr. The gold contacted TiS3 device has a rather linear I-V behavior while the Gr-TiS3-Gr heterojunction forms a contact with a higher Schottky barrier (250 meV). The I-V responses of the sensors were recorded at room temperature at a relative humidity of 55% and for different ethanol vapor concentrations (varying from 2 to 20 ppm). The plots indicate an increase in the resistance of Gr-TiS3-Gr due to adsorption of water and ethanol with a relatively high sensing response (~495% at 2 ppm). The results reveal that stable responses to 2 ppm concentrations of ethanol are achieved at room temperature. The response and recovery times are around 8 s and 72 s, respectively. Weaker responses are obtained for methanol and acetone.

Schematic representation of resistance sensor for detection of low concentration of ethanol vapor. The graphene and TiS3 nanoribbons were synthesized using chemical vapor deposition and chemical vapor transport technique respectively. The 2D graphene/TiS3 heterojunction device was fabricated to make a high response sensor due to their synergy effect.

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A.I. thanks the National Science Foundation (INSF, Grant No. 940011) for the financial support of her research. A.E. would like to thank the Iran National Science Foundation (INSF, Grant No. 96011388). S.J.H. thanks the Engineering and Physical Sciences (U.K.) (Grants EP/M010619/1, EP/P009050/1) and the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (Grant ERC-2016-STG-EvoluTEM-715502 and the ERC Synergy project). We thank Diamond Light Source for access and support in use of the electron Physical Science Imaging Centre that contributed to the results presented here.

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Correspondence to Azam Iraji zad.

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Rafiefard, N., Iraji zad, A., Esfandiar, A. et al. A graphene/TiS3 heterojunction for resistive sensing of polar vapors at room temperature. Microchim Acta 187, 117 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1007/s00604-019-4097-y

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  • Gas sensor
  • Graphene
  • 2D layered materials
  • 2D and 1D semiconductors
  • Nanocomposite
  • Titanium trisulfide
  • Transition metal trichalcogenides (TMTCs)
  • Tunable Schottky barrier
  • VOC sensor
  • Van der Waals heterostructures
  • Chemical vapor transport (CVT)
  • Chemical vapor deposition (CVD)