A Low Cost and Simple Lab-on-a-Chip for Spectrophotometric Determination of Ethanol



A simple lab-on-a-chip system was developed for the rapid determination of ethanol in different sample matrices, including gasohol and various alcoholic beverages. The colorimetric detection of ethanol using a spectrophotometer was based on the reaction between ethanol with 0.12 M ceric ammonium nitrate in acidic medium to produce a red colored product which gave a maximum absorption at 470 nm. A non-lithographic method was used for creating lab-on-a-chip molds to reduce  manufacturing cost and preparation steps. The lab-on-a-chip device was fabricated from polydimethylsiloxane which consisted of a simple Y-shaped working channel. Under optimum conditions, a linear calibration graph was obtained in the concentration range of 0.20 - 20 % (v/v) (r2> 0.999). The limit of detection (3 SD) and limit of quantification (10 SD) were 0.039 and 0.13 % (v/v), respectively. The precision reported in terms of relative standard deviation (RSD) values was less than 1.40 % (n = 15). To demonstrate the lab-on-a-chip’s performance, the determination of ethanol in gasohol and various alcoholic beverages was applied. The results obtained from the developed method compared with a standard gas chromatographic method were well correlated using the paired t-test and linear regression test. The results indicate that the proposed method has shown potential to extend the use of this simple lab-on-a-chip analytical device, due to its simplicity, low cost, lower reagent and sample consumption and high analytical performance. Moreover, the method of fabrication would be an additive manufacturing technique featuring a low equipment cost with no need for clean rooms.


Lab-on-a-chip, ethanol, alcoholic beverage, gasohol

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