Corresponding Author

Jie Sun(magnsun@mail.tsinghua.edu.cn)


The sulfur mustard (bis(2-chloroethyl) sulphide, HD), one of highly toxic chemical weapon agents, can damage the alive tissue cells (such as skin, lung, respiratory mucosa and so on), and cause carcinogenic and mutagenic effects for a long time exposure, which imposes a great threat not only to the human health, but also to the sustainable development of the society. With its convenience, high sensitivity and rapid response, electrochemical technology exhibits considerable potential in the field-deployed detection toward HD, but the related reports are rare. Herein, the electrochemical behavior of HD on the bare Pt electrode was investigated by electrochemical measurements, and cyclic voltammetric (CV) results exhibited two well-defined oxidation peaks. According to the CV curves at different scan rates, the calculated the amount of transfer electron (n) and transfer coefficient value (α) reveal that the oxidation of HD followed absorption-controlled kinetics. To investigate the electrochemical behavior of HD on the bare Pt electrode, FT-IR and comparative experiments were carried out. The HD oxidation processes corresponding to the two oxidation peaks in CV plots were explained. The results show that the oxidation peaks at 1.02 V and 1.27 V attributed to the oxidation formations of bis(2-chloroethyl) sulfoxide and bis(2-chloroethyl) sulfone, respectively. The difference of HD oxidation peaks potential provides a new strategy to identify bis(2-chloroethyl) sulfoxide and bis(2-chloroethyl) sulfone. Square wave voltammetry (SWV) was used to quantitatively analyze HD with bare Pt electrode as the working electrode, a linear dependence of anodic oxidation peak current versus HD concentration was obtained in the range of 2.5 × 10-5 ~ 6.0 × 10-4 mol·L-1, with a detection limit of 2.15 × 10-5 mol·L-1. Bare Pt, as the working electrode, which may not be modified furtherly, may distinguish the two oxidation peaks well. Additionally, the bare Pt working electrode demonstrated excellent anti-interfering ability in the presences of various inorganic ions and C6H12O6, as well as excellent stability. The investigation in the electrochemical behavior of HD will provide a foundation for the electrochemical sensor and degradation toward HD. The next work should focus on the improvements of linear range and limit detection with loaded Pt nanoparticle and multidimensional supports.

Graphical Abstract


Key Word: sulfur mustard, electrochemical behavior, electrooxidation, bare Pt electrode, sensor

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