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TitleOptimization of Au:CuO thin films by plasma surface modification for high-resolution LSPR gas sensing at room temperature
Author(s)Proença, Manuela
Rodrigues, Marco S.
Meira, Diana I.
Castro, M. Cidalia R.
Rodrigues, Pedro V.
Machado, A. V.
Alves, Eduardo
Barradas, Nuno P.
Borges, Joel
Vaz, F.
thin films
Au nanoparticles
nanostructural evolution
high-resolution LSPR spectroscopy
optical gas sensing
Issue date17-Sep-2022
PublisherMultidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute
CitationProença, M.; Rodrigues, M.S.; Meira, D.I.; Castro, M.C.R.; Rodrigues, P.V.; Machado, A.V.; Alves, E.; Barradas, N.P.; Borges, J.; Vaz, F. Optimization of Au:CuO Thin Films by Plasma Surface Modification for High-Resolution LSPR Gas Sensing at Room Temperature. Sensors 2022, 22, 7043.
Abstract(s)In this study, thin films composed of gold nanoparticles embedded in a copper oxide matrix (Au:CuO), manifesting Localized Surface Plasmon Resonance (LSPR) behavior, were produced by reactive DC magnetron sputtering and post-deposition in-air annealing. The effect of low-power Ar plasma etching on the surface properties of the plasmonic thin films was studied, envisaging its optimization as gas sensors. Thus, this work pretends to attain the maximum sensing response of the thin film system and to demonstrate its potential as a gas sensor. The results show that as Ar plasma treatment time increases, the host CuO matrix is etched while Au nanoparticles are uncovered, which leads to an enhancement of the sensitivity until a certain limit. Above such a time limit for plasma treatment, the CuO bonds are broken, and oxygen is removed from the film’s surface, resulting in a decrease in the gas sensing capabilities. Hence, the importance of the host matrix for the design of the LSPR sensor is also demonstrated. CuO not only provides stability and protection to the Au NPs but also promotes interactions between the thin film’s surface and the tested gases, thereby improving the nanocomposite film’s sensitivity. The optimized sensor sensitivity was estimated at 849 nm/RIU, which demonstrates that the Au-CuO thin films have the potential to be used as an LSPR platform for gas sensors.
Publisher version
AccessOpen access
IPC - Artigos em revistas científicas internacionais com arbitragem

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