• Organic field-effect transistors;
  • Conjugated polymers;
  • Sensors


Alkylating agents are simple and reactive molecules that are commonly used in many and diverse fields, such as organic synthesis, medicine, and agriculture. Some highly reactive alkylating species are also being used as blister chemical warfare agents. The detection and identification of alkylating agent is not a trivial issue because of their high reactivity and simple structure. Here, a novel polythiophene derivative that is capable of reacting with alkylating agents is reported, along with its application in direct electrical sensing of alkylators using an organic field-effect transistor, OFET, device. Upon reacting with alkylators, the OFET containing the new polythiophene analogue as its channel becomes conductive, and the gate effect is lost; this is in marked contrast to the response of the OFET to “innocent” vapors, such as alcohols and acetone. By following the drain–source current under gate bias, one can easily follow the processes of absorption of the analyte to the polythiophene channel and their subsequent reaction.