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Sensors - Novel sensing technologies or devices for pollutant and microbial detection.
Protection of human health and ecosystems requires rapid, precise sensors capable of detecting pollutants at the molecular level. Major improvements in process control, compliance monitoring, and environmental decision-making could be achieved if more accurate, less costly, more sensitive techniques were available. Nanotechnology offers the possibility of sensors enabled to be selective or specific, detect multiple analytes, and monitor their presence in real time. Examples of research in sensors include the development of nano-sensors for efficient and rapid in situ biochemical detection of pollutants, ultrafines, heavy metals and pathogens in the environment; sensors capable of continuous measurement over large areas, integration of nano-enabled sensors for real-time continuous monitoring; and sensors that utilize lab-on-a-chip technology. Research also may involve sensors that can be used in monitoring or process control to detect or minimize pollutants or their impact on the environment.