This paper will evaluate the usefulness of two nanostructuring techniques in order to grow low turn-on voltage electrodes for use in micro-discharge plasma applications such as the ST+D Ltd e-nose device. These devices are based on micro-plasma technology and currently operate at around 150V (at 10-2 Torr) or 3KV at atmosphere utilising a propriety power source. The application of such technology is the qualitative and qualitative detection of NOx with detection capabilities as low as 5 parts per billion. The e-nose patented device has undergone basic trials in a clinical environment and it is currently demonstrating 50ppb sensitivities, with an ultimate aim of moving this to parts per trillion.© (2008) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.