Terahertz Humidity Sensing Based on Surface-Modified Polymer Mesh Membranes with Photografting PEGMA Brush

Borwen You, Chih Feng Huang, Ja Yu Lu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A simple and compact intensity-interrogated terahertz (THz) relative humidity (RH) sensing platform is successfully demonstrated in experiments on the basis of combining a porous polymer sensing membrane and a continuous THz electronic system. The RH-sensing membrane is fabricated by surface modification of a porous polymer substrate with hydrophilic and photosensitive copolymer brushes via a UV-induced graft-polymerization process. The intensity interrogation sensing scheme indicated that the power reduction of the 0.4 THz wave is dependent on the grafting density of the copolymer brushes and proportional to the RH percent levels in the humidity-controlled air-sealed chamber. This finding was verified by the water contact angle measurement. Based on the slope of the proportional relation, the best sensitivity of the hydrophilic surface-modified sensing membrane was demonstrated at 0.0423 mV/% RH at the copolymer brush density of 1.57 mg/mm3 grafted on the single side of the sensing membrane. The sensitivity corresponds to a detection limit of approximately 1% RH. The THz RH sensing membrane was proven to exhibit the advantages of low loss, low cost, flexibility, high sensitivity, high RH resolution, and a wide RH working range of 25–99%. Thus, it is a good candidate for novel applications of wearable electronics, water- or moisture-related industrial and bio-sensing.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3302
Issue number15
Publication statusPublished - 2023 Aug

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General Chemistry
  • Polymers and Plastics


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