Microchimica Acta

, 185:289 | Cite as

Reversible chemiresistive sensing of ultra-low levels of elemental mercury vapor using thermally reduced graphene oxide

  • Alan Rodelle M. Salcedo
  • Fortunato B. SevillaIII
Short Communication


A chemiresistor sensor for ultra-low levels of elemental mercury (Hg0) vapor is described. The sensor was prepared through thermal reduction of graphene oxide (GO) deposited on an interdigitated electrode using only low temperature annealing typically at 230 °C. The sensor responds to the presence of Hg0 vapor within <1 min and spontaneously recovers its baseline through flushing with a Hg0-free carrier gas. The sensor has a linear response in the range of 0.5 to 12.2 ppbv of Hg0 vapor and a detection limit of 0.10 ppbv. The amount of GO and annealing temperature affect the sensor response and were optimized. The sensor can find use in monitoring exposure of persons to Hg0 vapors, for which a threshold value of 6.1 ppbv has been set by the World Health Organization.

Graphical abstract

Schematic of an interdigitated electrode modified with a layer of thermally reduced graphene oxide. It can be used as a chemiresistive sensor for Hg0 vapor. The sensor displays a rapid and reversible response and has an ultralow detection limit of 0.10 ppbv.


Elemental mercury Mercury vapor sensing Chemiresistor Reduced graphene oxide Low-temperature annealing Chemical sensor Thermal reduction Gas sensing 



One of the authors (ARS) gratefully acknowledges the research support fund provided by the Accelerated Science and Technology Human Resource Development Program (ASTHRDP) of the Department of Science and Technology-Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI). We are grateful for the kind assistance of Dr. Stephen Lirio in the morphological characterization of GO and tRGO.

Compliance with ethical standards

This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.


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Copyright information

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

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.The Graduate SchoolUniversity of Santo TomasManilaPhilippines
  2. 2.College of ScienceUniversity of Santo TomasManilaPhilippines
  3. 3.Research Center for the Natural and Applied SciencesUniversity of Santo TomasManilaPhilippines

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