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Phys Chem Chem Phys. 2013 Nov 28;15(44):19151-8. doi: 10.1039/c3cp52782d.

Impact of Pt additives on the surface reactions between SnO2, water vapour, CO and H2; an operando investigation.

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  • 1Tuebingen University, Faculty of Science, Department of Chemistry, Institute of Physical and Theoretical Chemistry, Auf der Morgenstelle 15, 72076 Tübingen, Germany.


The impact of Pt doping on the surface reactions between tin dioxide, water vapour, CO and H2 was investigated by a combination of simultaneously performed operando DRIFT (Diffuse Reflectance Infrared Fourier Transform) spectroscopy, DC resistance measurements and analysis of the reaction products by using a MS (Mass Spectrometer). Both undoped and Pt doped tin dioxide sensors were exposed to different test gases in synthetic air or in N2 backgrounds. The approach made it possible to identify the differences between the two materials with respect to their surface chemistry and their impact on the gas sensing performance. The main finding is that the presence of Pt changes the reaction partners' nature for water vapour and H2 on the one hand, and CO on the other hand when the sensors are operated in air. In this way the cross interference effect of humidity, which is responsible for the loss of CO sensing performance for the sensors based on undoped SnO2, is reversed.

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