Quick, accurate water detection possible

Aug 30, 2006

Scientists at Israel's Weizmann Institute say they've developed a method of water detection and measurement that's both rapid and accurate.

Water occurring in fuels and lubricants can cause motors to sputter, metal parts to rust, or chemical reactions to go awry. Existing industrial water tests are complicated and time-consuming.

The technique was developed in the Weizmann lab of Milko van der Boom. He and postdoctoral fellow Tarkeshwar Gupta created a versatile film on glass that is only 1.7 nanometers thick.

The film can measure the number of water molecules in a substance even when it contains only a few parts per million. In the sensor, metal complexes embedded in the film steal electrons from the water molecules.

When the number of electrons in the metal complexes changes, so does their color, and that change can be read optically. The test can be conducted in as little as five minutes, and the molecular film can be returned to its original state by washing it with a simple chemical.

The researchers are exploring the possibility of adapting the method to testing for trace amounts of such substances as metal ions or gasses.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

Explore further: Construction begins 2016 for Hyperloop on five-mile stretch

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Researcher has some questions for the interview

Feb 17, 2015

Interviews begin with questions, but a University at Buffalo researcher is instead questioning the interview, and the answers are mapping the history and unexplored conceptual areas of this familiar information-gathering ...

Recommended for you

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.