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Proceedings Paper

Miniature photoacoustic chemical sensor using microelectromechanical structures
Author(s): Paul M. Pellegrino; Ronald G. Polcawich; Samara L. Firebaugh
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Paper Abstract

Photoacoustic spectroscopy is a useful monitoring technique that is well suited for trace gas detection. The technique also possesses favorable detection characteristics when the system dimensions are scaled to a micro-system design. The objective of present work is to incorporate two strengths of the Army Research Laboratory (ARL), piezoelectric microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) and chemical and biological sensing into a monolithic MEMS photoacoustic trace gas sensor. A miniaturized macro-cell design was studied as a means to examine performance and design issues as the photoacoustics is scaled to a dimension approaching the MEMS level. Performance of the macro-cell was tested using standard organo-phosphate nerve gas simulants, Dimethyl methyl phosphonate (DMMP) and Diisoprpyl methyl phosphonate (DIMP). Current MEMS work centered on fabrication of a multi-layer cell subsystem to be incorporated in the full photoacoustic device. Preliminary results were very positive for the macro-cell sensitivity (ppb levels) and specificity indicating that the scaled cell maintains sensitivity. Several bonding schemes for a three-dimension MEMS photoacoustic cavity were investigated with initial results of a low temperature AuSn bond proving most feasible.

Paper Details

Date Published: 13 August 2004
PDF: 12 pages
Proc. SPIE 5416, Chemical and Biological Sensing V, (13 August 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.543934
Show Author Affiliations
Paul M. Pellegrino, U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States)
Ronald G. Polcawich, U.S. Army Research Lab. (United States)
Samara L. Firebaugh, U.S. Naval Academy (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5416:
Chemical and Biological Sensing V
Patrick J. Gardner, Editor(s)

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