Testing system picks up 3 ppb of benzene in indoor air in just 15 minutes

Categorie(s) : Innovation & Society, MINATEC, News, Research

Published : 3 February 2014

A new indoor-air-quality regulation will come into force in France on January 1, 2016. All buildings open to the public will have to prove that their indoor air contains less than 1 ppb of benzene. However, current portable testing systems are neither sensitive enough nor suitable for on-site testing. A research project backed by the French government’s Single Interministerial Fund aimed to develop just such a system. By the end of the project, Leti researchers had successfully detected 3 ppb of benzene in 15 minutes.

The system’s nanoporous sensors transmit varying amounts of UV rays depending on the benzene concentration detected. The system can still be improved, most notably by using thinner sensors. Currently, the only product on the market is a €5,000 VOC detector with a limit of 50 ppb for benzene-only detection. The researchers are hoping to develop a new product to meet the upcoming regulatory requirements, but at half the price.

Contact: jean.hue@cea.fr



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