Environmental Monitoring Compact Raman LIDAR System Utilizing APD Array DetectorsEPA Contract Number: 68D99066
Title: Environmental Monitoring Compact Raman LIDAR System Utilizing APD Array Detectors
Investigators: Karger, Arieh
Small Business: Radiation Monitoring Devices Inc.
EPA Contact: Manager, SBIR Program
Project Period: September 1, 1999 through March 1, 2000
Project Amount: $70,000
RFA: Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) - Phase I (1999) RFA Text | Recipients Lists
Research Category: Ecological Indicators/Assessment/Restoration , SBIR - Monitoring , Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR)
Description:This Phase I project will examine the feasibility of producing an inexpensive, compact, ultraviolet (UV) light detecting and ranging (LIDAR) system for environmental monitoring. The proposed system will detect various pollutants (e.g., S02, C02, CH4) by detecting the Raman backscatter from a UV laser source. The system will consist of a portable Cassegrain Telescope, a solid-state laser, and a novel micro avalanche photodiode ( -APD) array. These Geiger mode -APDs are capable of detecting single photon events with very high efficiency and without any costly amplification stages. Furthermore, these Geiger mode -APDs achieve single photon detection at room temperature with a bias voltage of less than 40V. The array of -APD detectors will be used to simultaneously resolve all the spectral components of the Raman return signal to minimize acquisition time and improve signal to noise. The use of an all solid state system and array detectors will allow the final system to be a cost effective, robust solution for environmental monitoring.
The development of an eye-safe and inexpensive Raman LIDAR system will significantly improve the ability to monitor pollutants in the atmosphere. This will allow for better targeting of pollution control measures and remote monitoring of smokestack outputs (e.g., power plants, factories, large ships). The system also will be useful for emergency monitoring of hazardous gas clouds emanating from chemical spills, allowing the size and chemical composition of the cloud to be determined in real time and allow the dispersion of the chemical into the atmosphere to be tracked.