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Proceedings Paper

An optical-fiber-based microsensor for explosives detection
Author(s): Graham Walsh; Cunqiang Sun; Hai Xiao; Ning Liu; Junhang Dong; Van Romero
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Paper Abstract

A new type of optical chemical sensor recently developed in our lab has been demonstrated for highly sensitive, in-situ detection of explosives. The sensor is comprised of a dense silica thin film grown on the straight-cut endface of a standard, 125μm telecommunication optical fiber. Silicalite is an all-silica MFI-type zeolite with an effective pore size of 0.55nm. MFI zeolite is highly hydrophobic and selectively adsorbs organics of appropriate molecular size. The sensor device operates through measuring the optical refractive index or optical thickness of the coated zeolite film which changes in response to the adsorption of molecular species in its crystalline structure. In this work, the sensor exhibited different responses to simulants including pxylene, o-xylene, and triisopropylbenzene and trinitrotoluene (TNT) trace vapor in helium carrier gas.

Paper Details

Date Published: 18 May 2006
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 6217, Detection and Remediation Technologies for Mines and Minelike Targets XI, 62171L (18 May 2006); doi: 10.1117/12.665572
Show Author Affiliations
Graham Walsh, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)
Cunqiang Sun, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)
Hai Xiao, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)
Ning Liu, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)
Junhang Dong, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)
Van Romero, New Mexico Institute of Mining and Technology (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6217:
Detection and Remediation Technologies for Mines and Minelike Targets XI
J. Thomas Broach; Russell S. Harmon; John H. Holloway, Editor(s)

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