optical gas sensing
Polymer and Materials Science
Wiley InterScience Backfile Collection 1832-2000
Electrical Engineering, Measurement and Control Technology
Siloxane copolymers having as side-chains azobenzene derivatives bearing different electron-withdrawing and donating substituents were deposited as thin films by dip coating, and their behaviour upon exposure to 100 pm NO2 was studied by UV/visible spectroscopy. Electron-donating substituents at the ortho positions on the aromatic rings in the azo unit have significant influence on the absorbance changes produced by exposure to NO2, and this is explained by modelling, which suggests that interaction between the electrophilic nitrogen atom in NO2 and the electron clouds of the azobenzene skeleton is responsible for the sensing process, rather than the formation of a Wheland intermediate or other product of chemical reaction. Especially effective substituents are methoxy groups in either aromatic ring ortho or the azo linkage, which also produce a significant increase in intensity of the long-wavelength n-π* transition. This moves the optical interrogation signal to a wavelength range of particular benefit for potential applications. Copyright © 1998 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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