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Journal of Chemistry
Volume 2017, Article ID 8545690, 7 pages
Research Article

TiO2/Pt/TiO2 Sandwich Nanostructures: Towards Alcohol Sensing and UV Irradiation-Assisted Recovery

1College of Nanotechnology, King Mongkut’s Institute of Technology Ladkrabang, Chalongkrung Rd., Ladkrabang, Bangkok 10520, Thailand
2National Nanotechnology Center (NANOTEC), NSTDA, Thailand Science Park, Pathum Thani 12120, Thailand
3Nanotec-KMITL Center of Excellence on Nanoelectronics Device, Bangkok 10520, Thailand

Correspondence should be addressed to Winadda Wongwiriyapan;

Received 9 June 2017; Revised 6 August 2017; Accepted 21 August 2017; Published 25 September 2017

Academic Editor: Łukasz Laskowski

Copyright © 2017 Rungroj Maolanon et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The TiO2/Pt/TiO2 sandwich nanostructures were synthesized by RF magnetron sputtering and demonstrated as an alcohol sensor at room-temperature operation with a fast recovery by UV irradiation. The TiO2/Pt/TiO2 layers on SiO2/Si substrate were confirmed by Auger electron spectroscopy with the interdiffusion of each layer. The TiO2/Pt/TiO2 layers on printed circuit board show the superior sensor response to alcohol in terms of the sensitivity and stability compared to the nonsandwich structure, that is, the only Pt layer or the TiO2/Pt structures. Moreover, the recovery time of the TiO2/Pt/TiO2 was improved by UV irradiation-assisted recovery. The optimum TiO2/Pt/TiO2 with thicknesses of the undermost TiO2 layer, a Pt layer, and the topmost TiO2 layer being 50 nm, 6 nm, and 5 nm, respectively, showed the highest response to ethanol down to 10 ppm. Additionally, TiO2/Pt/TiO2 shows an excellent sensing stability and exhibits different sensing selectivity among ethanol, methanol, and 2-propanol. The sensing mechanism could be attributed to the change of Pt work function during vapor adsorption. The TiO2 layer plays an important role in UV-assisted recovery by photocatalytic activity and the topmost TiO2 acts as protective layer for Pt.