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J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 7, 51-55, 2018
https://doi.org/10.5194/jsss-7-51-2018
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.
Regular research article
06 Feb 2018
Evaluation of the pH-sensitive swelling of a hydrogel by means of a plasmonic sensor substrate
Christoph Kroh1,2, Roland Wuchrer2, Margarita Günther1, Thomas Härtling1,2, and Gerald Gerlach1 1Technische Universität Dresden, Institute of Solid State Electronics, Mommsenstraße 15, 01069, Dresden, Germany
2Fraunhofer Institute for Ceramic Technologies and Systems IKTS, Maria-Reiche-Straße 2, 01109, Dresden, Germany
Abstract. The inline monitoring of parameters in aqueous liquids is facing an increasing demand in many different application areas. Hydrogels with pH-induced swelling and deswelling behavior offer a means to measure pH in such liquids. Here we investigate the optical interrogation of a pH-sensitive hydrogel which can be applied in the physiological pH range. For this, a nanostructured gold substrate supporting surface plasmon oscillations is coated with a HPMA/DMAEMA/TEGDMA/EG hydrogel. The gel swells in the pH range under investigation (here 4.5 to 6.5), and the resulting refractive index changes subsequently lead to a spectral shift of the plasmon resonance of the gold nanostructure. The spectral resonance position is determined from optical transmittance spectra of the sensor substrates, and the initial results for our hydrogel reported here indicate a nearly linear dependence between the swelling state and the plasmon resonance wavelength.

Citation: Kroh, C., Wuchrer, R., Günther, M., Härtling, T., and Gerlach, G.: Evaluation of the pH-sensitive swelling of a hydrogel by means of a plasmonic sensor substrate, J. Sens. Sens. Syst., 7, 51-55, https://doi.org/10.5194/jsss-7-51-2018, 2018.

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Short summary
The inline monitoring of parameters in aqueous liquids is facing an increasing demand in many application areas. In this paper we report on an optical monitoring of the pH value in liquids by means of a sensitive hydrogel, which can be applied in the physiological range. Our results indicate a nearly linear dependency between pH value and hydrogel swelling. Furthermore, we show an improvement of the response time by a factor of 2 in comparison to other systems exploiting this kind of hydrogel.
The inline monitoring of parameters in aqueous liquids is facing an increasing demand in many...
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