Gas sensors attract the attention of research since years because of their good performance and the extremely wide field of application. Environmental monitoring, chemical and industrial processes, automotive, medical diagnosis and healthcare are few of such applications. Chemical gas sensors are able to detect specific gases in a wide range of concentration going from few ppb to hundreds ppm. This paper deals with such a topic and presents a novel gas sensor for ethanol based on a Nb2O5 thin sensing film. The sensor was realized by depositing the niobium oxide layer on a tiny alumina substrate by means of a lab-scale plasma sputtering reactor. Subsequently, the sensor was characterized and it revealed good sensing performance towards ethanol. Ethanol monitoring finds application in several fields including breath analyzers for assessing drunk-driving situations, industrial monitoring, medical diagnosis and environmental safety. The proposed sensor, thanks to its good sensitivity, selectivity, wide concentration range, low-cost and low power consumption, can be a suitable solution in such applications. © 2020 IEEE.
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