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Proceedings Paper

Fingerprinting malathion vapor: a simulant for VX nerve agent
Author(s): Renbo Song; Yujie J. Ding; Ioulia B. Zotova
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Paper Abstract

Being motivated by the possibility of fingerprinting and detecting VX nerve agent, we have investigated its stimulant, i.e. malathion vapor, which is less toxic and commercially available, in the far-infrared/THz transition region and THz frequency range. Such a spectroscopic study was carried out by using Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR). Our intention is to obtain a specific spectroscopic signature of VX nerve agent as a chemical warfare agent. Following our experimental result, we have successfully observed eleven new absorption peaks from malathion vapor in the spectral ranges from 15 cm-1 to 68 cm-1 and from 75 cm-1 to 640 cm-1. Specifically, in the far-infrared/THz transition region, we have observed eight peaks and whereas in the THz region we have identified three relatively weak transition peaks. In addition, we have investigated the dependence of the absorption spectra on temperature in the range from room temperature to 60°C. In both of the frequency ranges, we have found that absorption coefficients significantly increase with increasing temperature. By comparing the transition peaks in the two frequency ranges, we have concluded that the frequency range of 400-640cm-1 is an optimal range for fingerprinting this chemical specie. We have designated two peaks for effectively and accurately identifying the VX nerve agents and one peak for differentiating between malathion and VX nerve agent.

Paper Details

Date Published: 10 April 2008
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 6949, Terahertz for Military and Security Applications VI, 694903 (10 April 2008); doi: 10.1117/12.775176
Show Author Affiliations
Renbo Song, Lehigh Univ. (United States)
Yujie J. Ding, Lehigh Univ. (United States)
Ioulia B. Zotova, ArkLight (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6949:
Terahertz for Military and Security Applications VI
James O. Jensen; Hong-Liang Cui; Dwight L. Woolard; R. Jennifer Hwu, Editor(s)

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