Catalytic fuel cell used as an analytical tool for methanol and ethanol determination. Application to ethanol determination in alcoholic beverages

Significance Statement

DMFC device used as an analytical tool for ethanol and methanol determination: applications to the analysis of real matrices.

Recently our research group has performed an experimental research [1,2], devoted to the utilization of Direct Methanol Fuel Cell (DMFC) as an analytical device, for methanol, or ethanol determination in real samples. After optimizing the best, among possible measurement formats, i.e. the open circuit, kinetic and potentiostatic format (the latter has been demonstrated the better) and discussing the effects of cross-over and temperature, it has been showed as a small commercial DMFC fuel cell can be useful to determine ethanol in alcoholic beverages, i.e. several wine and beer commercial samples. The obtained results have been compared both with ethanol content declared by the producer firm and with data obtained analyzing the same samples using a commercial amperometric catalase enzyme sensor [3]. The obtained correlation was found satisfactory and the precision, or lifetime of two methods comparable, only the measurement time was longer using the fuel cell. Nevertheless the possibility of improving the features, from the analytical point of view, of the catalytic fuel cell for methanol and ethanol, by introducing an enzyme (alcohol dehydrogenase), immobilized into a dialysis membrane small bag, in the anodic area of the fuel cell, has been recently demonstrated [4]. Using the enzymatic DMFC device, we have reached the goal concerning the drastic reduction of the measurement time by the fuel cell used for analytical purposes, enhancing at the same time its sensitivity [4]. Lastly the determination of other organic molecules, which contain an alcoholic function (although with a much lower sensitivity than methanol or ethanol) in real matrices, which do not contain high concentrations of possible alcoholic interfering compounds, was also demonstrated [4].

References

[1] M.Tomassetti, R.Angeloni, G. Merola, M. Castrucci, L.Campanella. Catalytic fuel cell used as an analytical tool for methanol and ethanol determination. Application to ethanol determination in alcoholic beverages. Electrochimica Acta, 191 (2016) 1001–1009.

[2] M. Tomassetti, R. Angeloni, G. Merola, M. Castrucci, L. Campanella. Catalytic Fuel Cell as an Analytical Tool for Methanol and Ethanol Determination. Proceedding of  2015 XVIII AISEM Annual Conference. 978-1-4799-8591-3/15/$31.00 ©2015 IEEE.

[3] R. Angeloni, M. Tomassetti, M. Castrucci, L. Campanella. Ethanol Determination in Alcoholic Beverages Using Two Different Amperometric Enzyme Sensors. Current Analytical Chemistry, 11 (2015) 56-67.

[4] M. Tomassetti, G. Merola, R. Angeloni, S. Marchiandi, L. Campanella. Further development on DMFC device used for analytical purpose. “manuscript in preparation”.

      

 

Figure Legend: DMFC H-TEC Model F111 Fuel Cell, obtained from Fuel Cell Store (College Station, TX, USA).

 

Catalytic fuel cell used as an analytical tool for methanol and ethanol determination. Application to ethanol determination in alcoholic beverages. Renewable Energy Global Innovations

About the author

Prof. Mauro Tomassetti, bachelor  in Chemistry (1969) and in Pharmacy (1977).  Full Professor of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Rome ‘La Sapienza’ since 2003; already Associate Professor since 1985 to the same University.

His research interests are in the development of electrochemical sensors, biosensors and immunosensors working both in aqueous and organic solvents and in their application to environmental, biopharmaceutical and food analysis.

He has also interest in thermal analytical studies (TG, DTA, DSC) for the purity control, or the characterisation of several materials (drugs, foodstuffs, polymers, etc.) and in the study and characterisation of archaeological finds and cultural heritages, investigated by means of several instrumental techniques of chemical analysis.

Member of teaching staff of  PhD in Engineering and Process.

Member of “Centro di ricerche applicate alla Protezione dell’Ambiente e dei Beni Culturali (CIABC)“, Sapienza University.

Member of “Istituto per lo Studio dei Materiali Nanostrutturati (ISMN)” of CNR .

Associate Editor of Current Analytical Chemistry.

Member of Editorial Board of Current Pharmaceutical Analysis.

Author of about 506 papers, 243 of which original research paper published on international Journals, and of about 460 communications to congress, overall in the above recorded fields of  research. 

Journal Reference

Electrochimica Acta, Volume 191, 10 February 2016, Pages 1001–1009.

Mauro Tomassetti*, Riccardo Angeloni, Giovanni Merola, Sergio Marchiandi, Mauro Castrucci, Luigi Campanella.

Department of Chemistry, University of Rome “La Sapienza”, p.le Aldo Moro, 5, 00185, Rome, Italy.

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