Carbon nanotube detectors for microchip CE: Comparative study of single-wall and multiwall carbon nanotube, and graphite powder films on glassy carbon, gold, and platinum electode surfaces

Martin Pumera, Arben Merkoçi, Salvador Alegret

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The performance of microchip electrophoresis/electrochemistry system with carbon nano-tube (CNT) film electrodes was studied. Electrocatalytic activities of different carbon materials (single-wall CNT (SWCNT), multiwall CNT (MWCNT), carbon powder) cast on different electrode substrates (glassy carbon (GC), gold, and platinum) were compared in a microfluidic setup and their performance as microchip electrochemical detectors was assessed. An MWCNT film on a GC electrode shows electrocatalytic effect toward oxidation of dopamine (E1/2 shift of 0.09 V) and catechol (E1/2 shift of 0.19 V) when compared to a bare GC electrode, while other CNT/carbon powder films on the GC electrode display negligible effects. Modification of a gold electrode by graphite powder results in a strong electrocatalytic effect toward oxidation of dopamine and catechol (E1/2 shift of 0.14 and 0.11 V, respectively). A significant shift of the half-wave potentials to lower values also provide the MWCNT film (E1/2 shift of 0.08 and 0.08 V for dopamine and catechol, respectively) and the SWCNT film (E1/2 shift of 0.10 V for catechol) when compared to a bare gold electrode. A microfluidic device with a CNT film-modified detection electrode displays greatly improved separation resolution (Rs) by a factor of two compared to a bare electrode, reflecting the electrocatalytic activity of CNT.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1274-1280
Number of pages7
Issue number8
Publication statusPublished - 2007 Apr 1


All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Biochemistry
  • Clinical Biochemistry

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