Document Type


Publication Date



American Chemical Society

Source Publication

ACS Sensors

Source ISSN


Original Item ID

DOI: 10.1021/acssensors.9b00564


Most chemical sensors are only partially selective to any specific target analyte(s), making identification and quantification of analyte mixtures challenging, a problem often addressed using arrays of partially selective sensors. This work presents and experimentally verifies a signal-processing technique based on estimation theory for online identification and quantification of multiple analytes using only the response data collected from a single polymer-coated sensor device. The demonstrated technique, based on multiple stages of exponentially weighted recursive least-squares estimation (EW-RLSE), first determines which of the analytes included in the sensor response model are absent from the mixture being analyzed; these are then eliminated from the model prior to executing the final stage of EW-RLSE, in which the sample’s constituent analytes are more accurately quantified. The overall method is based on a sensor response model with specific parameters describing each coating-analyte pair and requires no initial assumptions regarding the concentrations of the analytes in a given sample. The technique was tested using the measured responses of polymer-coated shear-horizontal surface acoustic wave devices to multi-analyte mixtures of benzene, toluene, ethylbenzene, xylenes, and 1,2,4-trimethylbenzene in water. The results demonstrate how this method accurately identifies and quantifies the analytes present in a sample using the measured response of just a single sensor device. This effective, simple, lower-cost alternative to sensor arrays needs no arduous training protocol, just measurement of the response characteristics of each individual target analyte and the likely interferents and/or classes thereof.


Accepted version. ACS Sensors, Vol. 4, No. 6 (May 2019): 1682-1690. DOI. © 2019 American Chemical Society. Used with permission.

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