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Nanotechnology. 2019 Feb 5. doi: 10.1088/1361-6528/ab048d. [Epub ahead of print]

Improved photo- and chemical-responses of graphene via porphyrin-functionalization for flexible, transparent, and sensitive sensors.

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School of Mechanical Engineering, Yonsei University, Seoul, Korea (the Republic of).
School of Mechanical Engineering, Yeungnam University, Gyeongsan, Gyeongsangbuk-do, Korea (the Republic of).


The functionalization of graphene with organic molecules is beneficial for the realization of high-performance graphene sensors because functionalization can provide enhanced functionalities beyond the properties of pristine graphene. Although various types of sensors based on organic-graphene hybrids have been developed, the functionalization processes have poor thickness-controllability/reliability or require post-processing, and sensor applications rely on conventional, rigid substrates such as SiO2/Si. Here, a flexible and transparent metalloporphyrin (MPP)-graphene hybrid for sensitive UV detection and chemical sensing is demonstrated. MPP, which provides strong light absorption, redox chemistry, and catalytic activity, is simply deposited onto graphene via one-step evaporation. Optical and electronic characterizations confirm that the graphene is successfully functionalized by MPP while maintaining its outstanding electronic properties. The MPP- functionalization greatly improves the photo- and chemical-sensing performances of the graphene, resulting in over 200% enhanced sensitivities for both UV light (365 nm) and toluene. Simultaneously, the MPP-graphene sensor exhibits no considerable change in electrical resistance under bending conditions, and remarkable optical transmittance in the visible range. On the basis of the excellent performances of the MPP-graphene hybrid, including high sensitivities, flexibility, transparency, and the ease and cost-effectiveness of the MPP-functionalization, it will be a promising candidate for flexible and transparent sensor applications.


UV monitoring; VOC detection; flexible devices; functionalized graphene; porphyrin


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