Highly sensitive sensors based on metal-oxide nanocolumns for fire detection

Kwangjae Lee, Young Seok Shim, Young Geun Song, Soo Deok Han, Youn Sung Lee, Chong Yun Kang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


A fire detector is the most important component in a fire alarm system. Herein, we present the feasibility of a highly sensitive and rapid response gas sensor based on metal oxides as a high performance fire detector. The glancing angle deposition (GLAD) technique is used to make the highly porous structure such as nanocolumns (NCs) of various metal oxides for enhancing the gas-sensing performance. To measure the fire detection, the interface circuitry for our sensors (NiO, SnO2, WO3 and In2 O3 NCs) is designed. When all the sensors with various metal-oxide NCs are exposed to fire environment, they entirely react with the target gases emitted from Poly(vinyl chlorides) (PVC) decomposed at high temperature. Before the emission of smoke from the PVC (a hot-plate temperature of 200 ◦ C), the resistances of the metal-oxide NCs are abruptly changed and SnO2 NCs show the highest response of 2.1. However, a commercial smoke detector did not inform any warning. Interestingly, although the NiO NCs are a p-type semiconductor, they show the highest response of 577.1 after the emission of smoke from the PVC (a hot-plate temperature of 350 ◦ C). The response time of SnO2 NCs is much faster than that of a commercial smoke detector at the hot-plate temperature of 350 ◦ C. In addition, we investigated the selectivity of our sensors by analyzing the responses of all sensors. Our results show the high potential of a gas sensor based on metal-oxide NCs for early fire detection.

Original languageEnglish
Article number303
JournalSensors (Switzerland)
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2017 Feb 7


  • Fire detection
  • Gas sensor
  • Nanostructures

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Analytical Chemistry
  • Information Systems
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Biochemistry
  • Instrumentation
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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