Final Report: Compact Multi-Pollutant Mid-Infrared Laser Spectroscopic Trace-Gas Sensor

EPA Grant Number: R835137
Title: Compact Multi-Pollutant Mid-Infrared Laser Spectroscopic Trace-Gas Sensor
Investigators: Wysocki, Gerard
Institution: Princeton University
EPA Project Officer: Hunt, Sherri
Project Period: February 1, 2012 through January 31, 2016
Project Amount: $250,000
RFA: Developing the Next Generation of Air Quality Measurement Technology (2011) RFA Text |  Recipients Lists
Research Category: Air Quality and Air Toxics , Air

Objective:

In this project, we focused on development of a compact spectroscopic sensor node for quantitative measurements of multiple chemical compounds simultaneously. The primary goal over the course of the entire project was on development of a compact, cryogen-free trace gas sensor node targeting the spectral range containing the absorption band of benzene, which is a highly toxic atmospheric pollutant. As a result, we have developed a broadband and high-resolution spectrometer based on a novel multi-DFB-QCL array, and demonstrated multi-species chemical detection of benzene and other broadband absorbers by targeting the spectral window at ~9.6 mm. 

Summary/Accomplishments (Outputs/Outcomes):

The project was generally carried out accordingly to the originally proposed research plan with slightly revised aims based on the research performed within this project. Based on extensive tests of five laser technologies (EC-QCL and distributed feedback DFB-QCL in year 1, distributed Bragg reflector DBR-QCL in year 2, Fabry Perot FP-QCLs and a prototype multi-DFB-QCL array in year 3), we concluded that the most promising technology for benzene detection is the multi-DFB-QCL array. Based on the above findings in 2014 and 2015, we have pursued a development of a fully functional benzene sensor prototype based on a pulsed multi-DFB-QCL array and a 76 m effective pathlength multipass cell, as originally planned in the proposed project. This system using a direct absorption spectroscopy technique provides benzene concentration sensitivity at ~15 ppbv levels for an average of 1 min. In the last year of the project, the developed sensor system was fully tested and characterized using benzene gas mixtures and vapors sampled from different products that potentially contain benzene traces. The results are detailed in the final report. 


Journal Articles on this Report : 5 Displayed | Download in RIS Format

Other project views: All 21 publications 5 publications in selected types All 5 journal articles
Type Citation Project Document Sources
Journal Article Hangauer A, Spinner G, Nikodem M, Wysocki G. High frequency modulation capabilities and quasi single‐sideband emission from a quantum cascade laser. Optics Express 2014;22(19):23439‐23455. R835137 (2014)
R835137 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Hangauer A, Wysocki G. Gain compression and linewidth enhancement factor in mid‐IR quantum cascade lasers. IEEE Journal of Selected Topics in Quantum Electronics 2015;21(6):1200411 (11 pp.). R835137 (2014)
    R835137 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Hangauer A, Westberg J, Zhang E, Wysocki G. Wavelength modulated multiheterodyne spectroscopy using Fabry-Perot quantum cascade lasers. Optics Express 2016;24(22):25298-25307. R835137 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Smith CJ, Wang W, Wysocki G. Real‐time calibration of laser absorption spectrometer using spectral correlation performed with an in‐line gas cell. Optics Express 2013;21(19):22488‐22503. R835137 (2013)
    R835137 (Final)
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  • Journal Article Wang Y, Soskind MG, Wang W, Wysocki G. High‐resolution multi‐heterodyne spectroscopy based on Fabry‐Perot quantum cascade lasers. Applied Physics Letters 2014;104(3):031114. R835137 (2013)
    R835137 (2014)
    R835137 (Final)
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  • Supplemental Keywords:

    Laser spectroscopy, multi-species detection, trace-gas sensor networks, benzene, benzene detector

    Progress and Final Reports:

    Original Abstract
    2012 Progress Report
    2013 Progress Report
    2014 Progress Report