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Proceedings Paper

Long wave infrared cavity-enhanced sensors using quantum cascade lasers
Author(s): Matthew S. Taubman; David C. Scott; Tanya L. Myers; Bret D. Cannon
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Paper Abstract

Quantum cascade lasers (QCLs) are becoming well known as convenient and stable semiconductor laser sources operating in the mid- to long-wave infrared, and are able to be fabricated to operate virtually anywhere in the 3.5 to 25 micron region. This makes them an ideal choice for infrared chemical sensing, a topic of great interest at present, spanning at least three critical areas: national security, environmental monitoring and protection, and the early diagnosis of disease through breath analysis. There are many different laser-based spectroscopic chemical sensor architectures in use today, from simple direct detection through to more complex and highly sensitive systems. Many current sensor needs can be met by combining QCLs and appropriate sensor architectures, those needs ranging from UAV-mounted surveillance systems, through to larger ultra-sensitive systems for airport security. In this paper we provide an overview of various laser-based spectroscopic sensing techniques, pointing out advantages and disadvantages of each. As part of this process, we include our own results and observations for techniques under development at PNNL. We also present the latest performance of our ultra-quiet QCL control electronics now being commercialized, and explore how using optimized supporting electronics enables increased sensor performance and decreased sensor footprint for given applications.

Paper Details

Date Published: 17 November 2005
PDF: 16 pages
Proc. SPIE 6010, Infrared to Terahertz Technologies for Health and the Environment, 60100C (17 November 2005);
Show Author Affiliations
Matthew S. Taubman, Pacific Northwest National Lab. (United States)
David C. Scott, Pacific Northwest National Lab. (United States)
Tanya L. Myers, Pacific Northwest National Lab. (United States)
Bret D. Cannon, Pacific Northwest National Lab. (United States)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 6010:
Infrared to Terahertz Technologies for Health and the Environment
Alexey A. Belyanin; Rebekah A. Drezek; Claire F. Gmachl, Editor(s)

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