Superhigh sensing response and selectivity for hydrogen gas using PdPt@ZnO core-shell nanoparticles: Unique effect of alloyed ingredient from experimental and theoretical investigations

Thuy T.D. Nguyen, Dung Van Dao, Nguyen Thi Thu Ha, Tuong Van Tran, Dong Seog Kim, Ji Wook Yoon, Nguyen Ngoc Ha, In Hwan Lee, Yeon Tae Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

24 Citations (Scopus)


Alloy@semiconductor core-shell nanoparticles (CSNPs) offer great advantages for hydrogen sensing due to their unique properties compared to the individual components. Herein the synthesis of alloyed PdPt@ZnO CSNPs via a hydrothermal approach is reported. PdPt@ZnO sensor exhibits an impressive sensing response of 48 with respect to Pd@ZnO (22), Pt@ZnO (14), and free ZnO (9), along with the fast response and recovery times (0.7 and 3.0 min) to 100 ppm hydrogen at 350 °C, thus outperforming current achievements of advanced single-metal hybridized semiconductors. It further delivers high selectivity and long-term stability for hydrogen sensing. These improvements are attributed to (1) high catalytic activity of alloyed PdPt core, (2) high content of oxygen vacancies and chemisorbed oxygen in ZnO shell, (3) facile two-way transfer of electrons between the core and shell, and (4) high surface area and porosity of CSNPs. In addition, DFT calculations show that alloyed PdPt core has an excellent intrinsic hydrogen adsorption capability, superior to free-standing Pd and ZnO shell. These investigations together provide mechanistic insights into the working of the system in terms of gas adsorption, reaction, and desorption.

Original languageEnglish
Article number131083
JournalSensors and Actuators, B: Chemical
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Mar 1

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the National Research Foundation of Korea (NRF) grant funded by the Korea government (MSIT) ( NRF-2020R1A2B5B03001603 , 2021R1A2C2008447 ), and BK21-FOUR Program of the MOE and NRF of Korea.

Funding Information:
In-Hwan Lee received his Ph.D. degree in materials science and engineering from Korea University, Korea in 1997. During 1997–1999, he was a postdoctoral fellow at Northwestern University. Then, he joined Samsung Advanced Institute of Technology, where he led an epitaxial team and developed InGaN/GaN violet LDs. From 2002 to 2017, he was a faculty member at School of Advanced Materials Engineering, Jeonbuk National University, South Korea. With the sabbatical grant from LG foundation, he was at Yale University during 2008–2009. In 2017 March, he joined Department of Materials Engineering, Korea University, Korea as a full professor. His current research focuses on the development of nanotechnology-inspired novel optoelectronic devices including LEDs, photovoltaic devices, and sensors. He has authored or coauthored over 270 peer-reviewed research articles in major scientific journals, and presented over 70 invited seminars and talks around the world, and holds over 20 patents at various stages of the process.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier B.V.


  • Core-shell nanoparticles
  • Hydrogen sensor
  • PdPt alloy
  • ZnO

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Instrumentation
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Metals and Alloys
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Materials Chemistry


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