Chemical Warfare Agent Detection with Conjugated Polymer-Single Walled Carbon Nanotube Composites


John F. Fennell Jr


John F. Fennell Jr., Hitoshi Hamaguchi, Timothy M. Swager

Author Affiliation: 

Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies, Army Research Labs


Chemical warfare agents (CWA) continue to present a threat to U.S. military personnel in operational areas all over the world. Reliable measurements of CWAs are critical to contamination detection, avoidance and remediation. The current deployed systems are accurate but are also large and expensive. Chemiresistors may indeed provide a solution to this operational requirement. Specifically, chemiresistive sensors using single-walled carbon nanotubes (SWCNT) coupled with polythiophene polymer derivatives have been shown to have high sensitivity, endurance and have a simple fabrication process. To improve sensitivity and stability, we have endeavored to develop a SWCNT / poly (3,4-ethylenedioxythiophene (PEDOT) derivative sensor system. Additionally, we will show that the inclusion of a hexafluoroisopropanol (HFIP) group as a receptor enhances sensitivity to a nerve agent mimic (dimethylmethylphosphonate, DMMP).