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Reference type: Journal
Authors: Stringer RC, Gangopadhyay S, Grant SA
Article Title: Detection of Nitroaromatic Explosives Using a Fluorescent-Labeled Imprinted Polymer.
Publication date: 2010
Journal: Analytical Chemistry
Volume: 82
Issue: (10)
Page numbers: 4015-4019.
DOI: 10.1021/ac902838c

Abstract: Optical sensors have proven to be a useful method in identifying explosive devices by recognizing vapors of explosive compounds that become airborne and emanate from the device. To detect high explosive compounds such as TNT, a molecularly imprinted polymer (MIP) sensing mechanism was developed. This mechanism consists of MIP microparticles prepared using methacrylic acid as the functional monomer. The MIP microparticles are then combined with fluorescent quantum dots via a simple cross-linking procedure. The result is a highly robust optical sensing scheme that is capable of functioning in an array of environmental conditions. To study the sensing mechanisms's ability to detect nitroaromatic analytes, the fluorescent-labeled MIP particles were tested for their performance in detecting aqueous 2,4-dinitrotoluene (DNT), a nitroaromatic molecule very similar to TNT, as well as TNT itself. These preliminary data indicate that the system is capable of detecting nitroaromatic compounds in solution with high sensitivity, achieving lower limits of detection of 30.1 and 40.7 μM for DNT and TNT, respectively. The detection mechanism also acted rapidly, with response times as low as 1 min for TNT. Due to the results of this study, it can be concluded that the fluorescent-labeled MIP system is a feasible method for detecting high explosives, with the potential for future use in detecting vapors from explosive devices
Template and target information: nitroaromatic explosives, 2,4,6-trinitrotoluene, TNT, 2,4-ditritoluene, DNT

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