Molecular Self-Assembly of Two-Terminal, Voltammetric Microsensors with Internal References

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Science  03 May 1991:
Vol. 252, Issue 5006, pp. 688-691
DOI: 10.1126/science.252.5006.688


Self-assembly of a ferrocenyl thiol and a quinone thiol onto Au microelectrodes forms the basis for a new microsensor concept: a two-terminal, voltammetric microsensor with reference and sensor functions on the same electrode. The detection is based on measurement of the potential difference of current peaks for oxidation and reduction of the reference (ferrocene) and indicator (quinone) in aqueous electrolyte in a two-terminal, linear sweep voltammogram in which a counterelectrode of relatively large surface area is used. The quinone has a half-wave potential, E½, that is pH-sensitive and can be used as a pH indicator; the ferrocene center has an E1/2 that is a pH-insensitive reference. The key advantages are that such sensors require no separate reference electrode and function as long as current peaks can be located for reference and indicator molecules.

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