Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Dr. Subra Muralidharan

Second Advisor

Dr. Dongil Lee

Third Advisor

Dr. Sherine Obare

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Marc Perkovic

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


This research is focused on the design synthesis and characterization of nanosensors to detect the nerve gas agents such as sarin at very low concentration levels (parts per billion and lower) which is very important to combat terrorism. Nanosensors constructed by the bottom up approach could provide the low sensitivity levels and high selectivity required for nerve gas detection. The sensing mechanism exploits the inherent properties of nanomaterials and signal amplification by signal transduction. The components of a nanoparticle-fluorescent monomer-nanomolecule-receptor (NMNR) sensor have been designed, synthesized, and characterized successfully. Interaction of the components of NMNR sensor with a model nerve gas agent diethylchlorophosphate (DCP) have been investigated by fluorescence spectroscopy. Arrays of NMNR composites where the nanoparticle is SiO2 or TiO2 have been obtained on quartz substrates and their interaction with DCP vapors have been studied by fluorescence. These NMNR arrays detect DCP in the gas phase at as low as 0.1 ppb concentration and the interaction is reversible.

Included in

Chemistry Commons