Navigation Links
Detecting trace amounts of explosives with light

University of Adelaide research may help in the fight against terrorism with the creation of a sensor that can detect tiny quantities of explosives with the use of light and special glass fibres.

Published in the journal Sensors and Actuators B: Chemical, the researchers describe a novel optical fibre sensor which can detect explosives in concentrations as low as 6.3 ppm (parts per million). It requires an analysis time of only a few minutes.

"Traditionally explosives detection has involved looking for metals that encase them such as in land mines," says project leader Dr Georgios Tsiminis, from the University's Institute for Photonics and Advanced Sensing.

"In today's world, however, homemade improvised explosive devices will often have no metal in them so we need to be able to detect the explosive material itself. This can be difficult as they often don't interact with chemicals and we don't want them near electricity in case they explode."

Instead, the researchers are using a plastic material which emits red light when illuminated with green laser light and the amount of red light it emits is reduced by the presence of explosives.

Three minute holes at the core of specially manufactured optical fibres are coated with the plastic or polymer material in a thin layer. The explosives sample is drawn up the holes in the fibre by capillary action and the amount of red light emitted measured.

"This has high sensitivity and we can detect tiny quantities of an explosive in a small sample," says Dr Tsiminis, who is an Australian Research Council Super Science Fellow. "And not only do we know if explosives are there, we can quantify the amount of explosive by looking at how the light emission changes over time."

Dr Tsiminis says the sensor is ideal for forensics investigations to determine whether explosives have been present in a particular location. It's inexpensive, quick and easy to use and could be done on site to detect trace amounts of explosive.

"What I like about this technology is that it has a lot of complicated physics underlying it, but it is really a very simple concept," Dr Tsiminis says.

"It also requires very little explosives present so is very sensitive. So forensic investigators would be able to take swabs from various surfaces, place them in some organic solvent and, within a few minutes, know if there have been explosives present."


Contact: Dr. Georgios Tsiminis
University of Adelaide

Related biology technology :

1. Sequenom Announces Issuance Of European Patent For Novel Methods Of Detecting Fetal Aneuploidy
2. Exclusive News From ARD German TV News Programme: New Methods for Detecting Anabolic Steroids Lead to Hundreds of Positive Doping Tests
3. Donations Required to Finalize Development of Cancer Detecting Breath Device
4. Japan Bioinformatics Announces Release of a Case Study on Detecting SNPs and Short INDELs
5. Safety reflector technology from footwear getting new life in detecting bioterror threats
6. Sequenom, Inc. Announces Issuance Of Patent For Methods Of Detecting Fetal Aneuploidy
7. CONRAD presents new technology combining contraception, HIV and herpes simplex virus-2 prevention
8. Trace Oxygen Analyzer for Measuring PPM O2 in an Inert Gas Purifier
9. Masy Systems Adds Scott Suttinger as Product Manager of DataTrace Dataloggers and Equipment Rentals
10. Contraceptives Market is Expected to Reach USD 23.3 Billion Globally in 2018: Transparency Market Research
11. Plandai Biotechnology, Inc. Enters Into License Agreement With Phyto Nutricare To Develop Nutraceutical Products
Post Your Comments:
(Date:11/26/2015)... MUMBAI , November 26, 2015 ... --> Accutest Research ... accredited Contract Research Organization (CRO), has ... Chase Cancer Center - Temple Health ... ,     (Photo: ) ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... --> ... 2020 report analyzes that automating biobanking workflow will ... long-term samples, minimizing manual errors, improving the workflow ... errors such as mislabeling or inaccurate sample barcoding ... a vital role in blood fractionation, DNA extraction, ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... 25, 2015 2 nouvelles études permettent ... les différences entre les souches bactériennes retrouvées dans la ... des êtres humains . Ces recherches  ouvrent une nouvelle ... prise en charge efficace de l,un des problèmes ... chats .    --> 2 nouvelles études ...
(Date:11/25/2015)... HOLLISTON, Mass. , Nov. 25, 2015 /PRNewswire/ ... ), a biotechnology company developing bioengineered organ implants for ... will present at the LD Micro "Main Event" ... p.m. PT. The presentation will be webcast live and ... will also be available at the conference for one-on-one ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:11/9/2015)...  Synaptics Inc. (NASDAQ: SYNA ), the leading ... into the automotive market with a comprehensive and dedicated ... consumer electronics human interface innovation. Synaptics, industry-leading touch controllers, ... automotive industry and will be implemented in numerous locations ... , Japan , and ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... Oct. 29, 2015  The J. Craig Venter Institute ... "DNA Synthesis and Biosecurity: Lessons Learned and Options for ... Health and Human Services guidance for synthetic biology providers ... --> --> Synthetic ... the potential to pose unique biosecurity threats. It now ...
(Date:10/29/2015)... NXTD ) ("NXT-ID" or ... the growing mobile commerce market and creator of ... leading marketplace to discover and buy innovative technology ... on StackSocial for this holiday season.   ... a biometric authentication company focused on the growing ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):