Statistical Methods for Selecting the Components of a Sensing Array

  • Margie L. Homer
  • Hanying Zhou
  • April D. Jewell
  • Margaret A. Ryan
Part of the Integrated Analytical Systems book series (ANASYS)


An electronic nose which uses an array of conductometric chemical sensors has been developed at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory; the JPL Electronic Nose is to be used as an event monitor in human habitat in a spacecraft. This sensor array is designed to identify and quantify 10–15 organic and inorganic species in air. The earlier generation/version JPL electronic noses consisted of 32 polymer-carbon black composite sensors; the target analytes included volatile organics as well as ammonia. This third generation electronic nose has a new suite of target analytes, and so, a new set of sensors was selected. In addition to volatile organic chemicals, the target analytes include the inorganic species: ammonia, sulfur dioxide and elemental mercury. The most recent array under development has 32 sensors; additional materials were selected in order to detect inorganic species and polymer-carbon black composite sensors were reevaluated. In the development of such a device, we must select sensors suitable for the detection of targeted analytes, and we must be able to evaluate both the sensors and the array response. This chapter will discuss the statistical tools and experimental criteria used to evaluate and select materials in the sensing array.


Sensor Response Target Analytes Sensor Array International Space Station Ethyl Cellulose 



The work discussed here was carried out at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, California Institute of Technology, under contract with the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA). Work was sponsored by Advanced Environmental Monitoring and Control Project of the Exploration Systems Mission Directorate.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2009

Authors and Affiliations

  • Margie L. Homer
    • 1
  • Hanying Zhou
    • 1
  • April D. Jewell
    • 2
  • Margaret A. Ryan
    • 1
  1. 1.Jet Propulsion LaboratoryCalifornia Institute of TechnologyPasadenaUSA
  2. 2.Tufts University Chemistry DepartmentMedfordUSA

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