The institute
FEMTO's news

You are here

An innovative solution to detect pollutants in the subsoil

Researchers from FEMTO-STinstitute and the company TOTAL SA have succeeded in detecting organic pollutants with methods that did not require sampling and have been able to monitor the evolution of the pollution of the subsoil over periods ranging up to several years.

This challenge was made possible thanks to the development of autonomous and wireless sensors capable of detecting hydrogen sulfide through a layer of sand. These results have just been published in the journal ACS Sensors.

 Soil pollution, especially in basements, is a major environmental issue. This problem is very significant in areas that have been occupied for years by human activities, particularly for industrial sites. Numerous standards have been put in place to fight against this scourge, which can have consequences on groundwater  and on the reuse of this land for new activities (construction, agricultural land, etc.).

The main challenge in monitoring basement pollution is to observe over long periods, up to several years, the evolution of pollution in the in the subsoil. The current principle is based on sampling at regular intervals via a triptych of field sampling-extraction-analysis. This strategy is effective in terms of analysis (detection threshold, composition, etc.) but is time-consuming and costly.

As part of a collaborative research project undertaken with funding from the French National Research Agency (UNDERGROUND project ANR-17-CE24-0037), researchers from the FEMTO-ST Institute (CNRS/Université de Franche-Comté/École Nationale Supérieure de Mécanique et des Microtechnologies de Besançon) and the company TOTAL SA have developed a new generation of sensors which can detect a very harmful pollutant, hydrogen sulphide, H2S, through a layer of sand. For this purpose, they have developed on the one hand wireless elastic wave sensors sensitive to H2S and on the other hand they have optimized the interrogation system to be able to follow the pollution of the subsoil through a layer of sand.

The starting point for this study is the use of sensors using surface elastic waves (SAW) because these transducers are passive and can be interrogated wirelessly: they do not require a local power source to operate and they can be interrogated remotely by a radio wave. They are therefore ideal for use underground. In addition, ground penetrating RADAR (GPR) is known to be a powerful tool for the geological analysis of subsoils. However, the performance of this type of GPR is not adapted to detect chemical species. Thus, researchers at the FEMTO-ST Institute, specialists in electronics and time-frequency, have modified a commercial GPR to give it the ability to interrogate SAW sensors.  In parallel, chemists at FEMTO-ST have developed a coordination polymer whose mechanical properties are modified by a specific reaction with H2S, thus enabling H2S detection by surface acoustic waves (SAW). This polymer is also compatible with collective manufacturing processes used in the MIMENTO clean room of FEMTO-ST (RENATECH national network).

https://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/acssensors.0c00013

Contacts :
Frédéric Chérioux
Jean-Michel Friedt

 

  • Rodolphe Boudot receives the 2020 EFTF Young Scientist Award

    The IEEE EFTF-IFCS 2021 is a joint conference of the European Frequency and Time Forum and the IEEE International Frequency Control Symposium. The 2021 joint conference, originally planned for Paris in April, has been converted to a virtual conference from 7th to 17th July, 2021

    Read more
  • Giacomo Clementi, grand prize i-PhD

    For his work on Lithium Niobate (LiNbO3), which has led to the design of original and efficient devices for the recovery of vibratory energy by the piezoelectric effect, in particular for connected objects.

    Read more
  • Understanding energy transfers during photosynthesis

    Using three pigments manipulated by scanning tunneling microscopy, researchers from IPCMS and FEMTO-ST are studying energy transfers between molecules to gain a finer understanding of the photosynthesis mechanism in plants. This work is published in Nature Chemistry.

    Read more
  • International Day of Light on May 16th

    This year, the Student Chapter of FEMTO-ST organizes on this occasion a photo contest on the theme ′′ Light phenomena in everyday life ".

    Read more
  • AMAROB labelled Deep Tech company

    Spin off of FEMTO-ST, Amarob technologie has received the Deep Tech company label awarded by Bpifrance.

    Read more
  • New platform to support the design and optimization of fuel cell hybride system and battery

    Virtual FCS" is the first freely accessible online simulation platform to support fuel cell manufacturers and users.

     Supported by a European funding, "Virtual FCS" has for French partner the University of Bourgogne-Franche-Comté through the FEMTO-ST institute and the FC-LAB

    Read more
  • ThermoBot : micro robots that walk on water

    Imagine, a robot, the size of a fly, walking on the surface of the water and pursued by a laser beam. One could believe in a science fiction scenario...

    Read more
  • Recognizing liars from the sound of their voice ?

    Scientists have prouved that the intensity, speed and pitch of the speaker's voice automatically influences our perception of the reliability and honesty of his or her speech. This work is published in the prestigious journal "Nature Communications"

    Read more
  • European project for the development of sustainable and high-performance bio-based composites

    Led by FEMTO-ST and supported by the University of Franche-Comté, the « SSUCHY » R&D project which brings together 17 European partners is entering its final phase. The project is now quite advanced.

    Read more
  • Understanding the cytotoxicity of metallic nanoparticles

    A recent study published in the journal "Chemical Science" and involving FEMTO-ST gives new insights into the understanding of the mechanisms of DNA alteration in cells by metallic nanoparticles.

    Read more

Pages