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Proceedings Paper

Optically coded nanocrystal taggants and optical frequency IDs
Author(s): George M. Williams; Thomas Allen; Charles Dupuy; Thomas Novet; David Schut
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Paper Abstract

A series of nanocrystal and nanocrystal quantum dot taggant technologies were developed for covertly tagging and tracking objects of interest. Homogeneous and heterogeneous nanocrystal taggant designs were developed and optimized for ultraviolet through infrared emissions, utilizing either Dexter energy transfer or Förster resonant energy transfer (FRET) between specific absorbing and emitting functionalities. The conversion efficiency, target-specific identification, and adhesion properties of the taggants were engineered by means of various surface ligand chemistries. The ability to engineer poly-functional ligands was shown effective in the detection of a biological agent simulant, detected through a NC photoluminescence that is altered in the presence of the agent of interest; the technique has broad potential applicability to chemical, biological, and explosive (CBE) agent detection. The NC photoluminescence can be detected by a remote LIDAR system; the performance of a taggant system has been modeled and subsequently verified in a series of controlled field tests. LIDAR detection of visible-emitting taggants was shown to exceed 2.8 km in calibrated field tests, and from these field data and calibrated laboratory measurements we predict >5 km range in the covert shortwavelength infrared (SWIR) spectral region.

Paper Details

Date Published: 24 April 2010
PDF: 14 pages
Proc. SPIE 7673, Advanced Environmental, Chemical, and Biological Sensing Technologies VII, 76730M (24 April 2010); doi: 10.1117/12.852896
Show Author Affiliations
George M. Williams, Voxtel, Inc. (United States)
Thomas Allen, Voxtel, Inc. (United States)
Charles Dupuy, Voxtel, Inc. (United States)
Thomas Novet, Voxtel, Inc. (United States)
David Schut, Voxtel, Inc. (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7673:
Advanced Environmental, Chemical, and Biological Sensing Technologies VII
Tuan Vo-Dinh; Robert A. Lieberman; Günter Gauglitz, Editor(s)

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