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Technical Paper

Development of High Accuracy NOx Sensor

This paper presents an improvement in the accuracy of NOx sensors at high NOx concentration regions by optimizing the manufacturing process, sensor electrode materials and structure, in order to suppress the deterioration mechanism of sensor electrodes. Though NOx sensors generally consist of Pt/Au alloy based oxygen pump electrodes and Pt/Rh alloy based sensor electrodes, detailed experimental analysis of aged NOx sensors showed changes in the surface composition and morphology of the sensor electrode. The surface of the sensor electrode was covered with Au, which is not originally contained in the electrode, resulting in a diminished active site for NOx detection on the sensor electrode and a decrease in sensor output. Theoretical analysis using CAE with molecular dynamics supported that Au tends to be concentrated on the surface of the sensor electrode.
Technical Paper

Development of High Accuracy Rear A/F Sensor

New 2A/F systems different from usual A/F-O2 systems are being developed to cope with strict regulation of exhaust gas. In the 2A/F systems, 2A/F sensors are equipped in front and rear of a three-way catalyst. The A/F-O2 systems are ideas which use a rear O2 to detect exhaust gas leaked from three-way catalyst early and feed back. On the other hand, the 2A/F systems are ideas which use a rear A/F sensor to detect nearly stoichiometric gas discharged from the three-way catalyst accurately, and to prevent leakage of exhaust gas from the three-way catalyst. Therefore, accurate detection of nearly stoichiometric gas by the rear A/F sensor is the most importrant for the 2A/F systems. In general, the A/F sensors can be classified into two types, so called, one-cell type and two-cell type. Because the one-cell type A/F sensors don’t have hysteresis, they have potential for higher accuracy.
Journal Article

Development of an On-Board PM Sensor for the OBD System Based on an Electrochemical Polarization

An on-board particulate matter (PM) sensor, consisting of a gas-permeable electrochemical cell with a porous yttria-stabilized zirconia solid oxide electrolyte, was developed to assist the on-board diagnostics (OBD) system of a vehicle. Exhaust is pumped from the anode side to the cathode side and PM deposited on the anode is instantly oxidized by the catalytic effects of the metal component of the electrode at temperatures higher than 350°C. The PM oxidation reaction occurs at the three-phase boundary between the anode, electrolyte and gas phase, and causes a slight change in the bulk average oxygen concentration, which produces electrochemical polarization by the difference in oxygen partial pressures between the anode and cathode. The developed PM sensor has a detection limit of 2 mg/m₃, at which level will enable PM detection in the OBD system according to the EURO VI regulation.