Microchimica Acta

, 185:252 | Cite as

Microwave-assisted synthesis of carbon dots for "turn-on" fluorometric determination of Hg(II) via aggregation-induced emission

  • Yuan Xu
  • Huiyu Li
  • Bo Wang
  • Haochi Liu
  • Li Zhao
  • Tianyu Zhou
  • Meitong Liu
  • Ning Huang
  • Yi Li
  • Lan Ding
  • Yanhua Chen
Original Paper


A fluorescent probe is presented for sensitive determination of Hg(II). It is based on aggregation induced enhancement effect (AIEE) of carbon dots co-doped with nitrogen and sulfur (N,S-CDs). The N,S-CDs were prepared by a one-pot microwave-assisted method using glycerol as the reaction solvent, and cystine as the source for C, N and S. The resulting CDs are well soluble in water and have a turn-on fluorescence response to Hg(II). The incubation time and ratio of raw materials were optimized. Fluorescence, best measured at excitation/emission wavelengths of 325/385 nm, increases linearly in the 1–75 μM Hg(II) concentration range, and the detection limit is 0.5 μM. The method performed successfully when detecting Hg(II) in spiked tap and lake waters, with recoveries between 92 and 106%.

Graphical abstract

Schematic presentation of the aggregation induced enhancement of the fluorescence of carbon dots co-doped with nitrogen and sulfur after addition of Hg(II).


Luminescence Nitrogen and sulfur co-doped carbon dots Carbon nanoparticles Aggregation-enhanced fluorescence AIEE Mercury ions 



This work was supported by the Provincial Nature Science Foundation of Heilongjiang (Grant No. E2016039).

Compliance with ethical standards

The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

Supplementary material

604_2018_2781_MOESM1_ESM.docx (65.2 mb)
ESM 1 (DOCX 65.1 kb)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Austria, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Yuan Xu
    • 1
  • Huiyu Li
    • 1
  • Bo Wang
    • 1
  • Haochi Liu
    • 1
  • Li Zhao
    • 1
  • Tianyu Zhou
    • 1
  • Meitong Liu
    • 1
  • Ning Huang
    • 1
  • Yi Li
    • 2
  • Lan Ding
    • 1
  • Yanhua Chen
    • 1
  1. 1.College of ChemistryJilin UniversityChangchunPeople’s Republic of China
  2. 2.State Key Laboratory of Inorganic Synthesis and Preparative Chemistry, College of ChemistryJilin UniversityChangchunPeople’s Republic of China

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