Electrochemical sensors based on functionalized carbon nanotubes modified with platinum nanoparticles for the detection of sulfide ions in aqueous media

  • Soha MohajeriEmail author
  • Abolghassem DolatiEmail author
  • Salva Salmani Rezaie
Regular Article


Vertically aligned carbon nanotube (CNT) arrays were synthesized by thermal chemical vapor deposition (CVD) on stainless steel substrates coated by cobalt nanoparticles as catalyst. Morphological and elemental analyses conducted by scanning electron microscopy (SEM) and energy dispersive X-ray spectroscopy (EDX) revealed that bamboo-like CNTs were blocked by Co nanoparticles at the tips. The fabricated nanotubes underwent functionalization by electrochemical oxidation in sulfuric acid, and the subsequent structural studies, as well as Fourier transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy confirmed that the tips of functionalized CNTs were opened while oxygenated functional groups were generated at the sidewalls and tube endings. In order to enhance the catalytic performance of the functionalized CNT-based electrodes, platinum nanoparticles were deposited on nanotubes by the potentiostatic and pulse potential electrodeposition processes, and the optimum operating parameters in both techniques were determined. The catalytic activities of these two electrodes towards methanol oxidation were determined by cyclic voltammetry (CV) testing, and a superior electrocatalytic activity and poisoning tolerance were detected for the electrode prepared by pulse deposition. The sensing performance of the pulse plated Pt/CNT electrode for the electrochemical detection and oxidation of dissolved sulfide ions was investigated. A sensitivity of \(0.632\, \upmu \hbox {A }\upmu \hbox {M}^{-1 }\hbox {cm}^{-2 }\) and a detection limit of \(0.26~\upmu \hbox {M}\) were obtained, indicating the enhanced capabilities of the developed sensor as a promising candidate for various industrial and environmental applications.

Graphical Abstract

Vertically aligned carbon nanotubes (CNTs) were synthesized by thermal chemical vapor deposition (CVD), and were subsequently functionalized by 10 cycles of electrochemical oxidation in sulfuric acid solution. CNT-based electrodes were modified by pulse plated platinum nanoparticles. The catalytic performance of the designed electrode towards methanol oxidation was investigated, and its sensing performance for the electrochemical detection of dissolved sulfide ions was explored.


Functionalized carbon nanotubes platinum nanoparticles electrodeposition methanol oxidation sulfide sensor 


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Copyright information

© Indian Academy of Sciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Materials Science and EngineeringSharif University of TechnologyTehranIran

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