Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

New device exposes explosive vapors

Date:
August 16, 2011
Source:
American Institute of Physics
Summary:
Researchers have designed an ultra-portable device to detect trace amounts of explosives such as TNT. The prototype is sensitive and inexpensive, and may one day be adapted to help clear dangerous landmines.

Decades after the bullets have stopped flying, wars can leave behind a lingering danger: landmines that maim civilians and render land unusable for agriculture. Minefields are a humanitarian disaster throughout the world, and now researchers in Scotland have designed a new device that could more reliably sense explosives, helping workers to identify and deactivate unexploded mines.

Related Articles


The prototype sensor features a thin film of polymer whose many electrons jump into higher energy levels when exposed to light. If left alone, the electrons would eventually fall back down, re-emitting light. When the 'excited' polymer is exposed to the electron-deficient molecules that are common to many explosives, however, the molecules steal some of the polymer's electrons, and so quench the light emission.

Other devices have used the change in a fluorescent polymer's light-emitting power to detect explosive vapors, but the Scottish team's prototype, described in the AIP's new journal AIP Advances, is the first to use a compact silicon-based micro-system to measure the change in the length of time an electron stays in the 'excited' higher energy state. This measurement is less affected by environmental factors, such as stray light, which should make the device more reliable. It is also an example of how the complementary properties of an organic semiconductor (the polymer) and an inorganic semiconductor (the silicon) can be combined to make novel devices, the researchers write.

The team's current prototype is not yet ready for commercialization, but future work may soon see it helping to reclaim landmine-littered land.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Institute of Physics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Yue Wang, Bruce R. Rae, Robert K. Henderson, Zheng Gong, Jonathan Mckendry, Erdan Gu, Martin D. Dawson, Graham A. Turnbull, Ifor D. W. Samuel. Ultra-portable explosives sensor based on a CMOS fluorescence lifetime analysis micro-system. AIP Advances, 2011; 1 (3): 032115 DOI: 10.1063/1.3624456

Cite This Page:

American Institute of Physics. "New device exposes explosive vapors." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 16 August 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815113609.htm>.
American Institute of Physics. (2011, August 16). New device exposes explosive vapors. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815113609.htm
American Institute of Physics. "New device exposes explosive vapors." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/08/110815113609.htm (accessed October 31, 2014).

Share This



More Matter & Energy News

Friday, October 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

EU, Russia, Ukraine Seal Breakthrough Gas Accord

EU, Russia, Ukraine Seal Breakthrough Gas Accord

AFP (Oct. 31, 2014) Russia agrees to resume gas deliveries to war-torn Ukraine through the winter in an EU-brokered, multi-billion dollar deal signed by the three parties in Brussels. Duration: 01:10 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Relief After “gas War” Is Averted

Relief After “gas War” Is Averted

Reuters - Business Video Online (Oct. 31, 2014) A gas war between Russia and Ukraine has been averted. But as Hayley Platt reports a deal was only reached after Kiev's western creditors agreed to partly funding the deal. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

Jaguar Land Rover Opens $800 Million Factory in Britain

AFP (Oct. 30, 2014) British luxury car manufacturer Jaguar Land Rover opened a $800 million engine manufacturing centre in western England, creating 1,400 jobs. Duration: 00:45 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

SkyCruiser Concept Claims to Solve Problem With Flying Cars

Buzz60 (Oct. 30, 2014) A start-up company called Krossblade says its SkyCruiser concept flying car solves the problem with most flying car concepts. Mara Montalbano (@maramontalbano) explains. Video provided by Buzz60
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Space & Time

Matter & Energy

Computers & Math

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins