Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Science



First Advisor

Dr. Subra Muralidharan

Second Advisor

Dr. Ekkehard Sinn

Third Advisor

Dr. Sherine Obare

Fourth Advisor

Dr. Yirong Mo

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


The central hypothesis of this research was development of a novel nanosensor for the detection of nerve agents and explosives. The nanosensor assembly comprises a bottom up approach with nanoparticle (N), monomer (M), nanomolecule (N) and a receptor (R) as moieties of a NMNR assembly. My research was focused on evaluating receptors for their efficiency towards the target analytes such as nerve agents and explosives. Pi electron rich receptor 2-Phenyl-2-Propanol and its fluorinated analog 1,1,1,3,3,3-Hexafluoro-2-Phenyl-2-Propanol were investigated for their ability to detect nerve agents such as DCP, its analogs DMMP and HCl along with the explosives mono, di, and trinitrotoluene. Subsequently, 1,1,1,3,3,3-hexafluoro-2-phenyl-2-propanol has been attached to a bipyridyl ligand at 4,4' position and then complexed with Zinc(II). The interaction of these complexes with the target analytes was characterized in terms of their fluorescence emissions and their efficacies compared. Sensors developed with these complexes and receptors can show improved sensitivity through signal transduction on interaction with target analytes.

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Chemistry Commons