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Catalysis Science & Technology 2013, 3(1), 123-127

Electrocatalytic effect of ZnO nanoparticles on reduction of nitroaromatic compounds

Nitroaromatic compounds have garnered a lot of attention due to their wide applications in military and industrial fields. Electrochemical techniques can be applied for sensing these compounds due to their electrochemical activity. Electrocatalytic reduction of nitroaromatic explosives was shown previously on silver nanoparticles and graphene based surfaces. Here, we demonstrate electrocatalytic reduction of explosives on zinc oxide nanoparticles. Nitroaromatic explosives were tested using glassy carbon electrodes modified with zinc or zinc oxide nanoparticles to study the catalytic effects on the electrochemical reduction of the nitroaromatic compounds with the aim of improving the sensitivity of their detection. A zinc oxide nanoparticle modified electrode has shown favourable improvement in peak height and hence greater sensitivity compared to bare glassy carbon electrodes and zinc nanoparticle modified electrodes.

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