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The Development of Photonic Crystal Optics and Wide-field Raman Imaging Spectrometers for Trace Explosive Detection

Hufziger, Kyle T. (2019) The Development of Photonic Crystal Optics and Wide-field Raman Imaging Spectrometers for Trace Explosive Detection. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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There is currently an urgent, unmet need for sensitive and specific instruments that can detect trace explosive residues from a distance, allowing suspicious objects to be remotely screened for the presence of explosives before the approach of law enforcement or military personnel. UV resonance Raman spectroscopy is a powerful technique that enables precise determination of the chemical identity of samples excited by monochromatic light. Furthermore, Raman spectroscopy is well suited for standoff detection, which makes this technique ideal as a method to screen for trace quantities of explosives from a distance. However, UV spectroscopies are hampered by the lack of commercially available optical devices that function in the deep UV spectral region from 200-300 nm due to the fact that many materials absorb light strongly at these wavelengths. Building deep UV spectroscopic instrumentation capable of standoff trace explosive detection therefore requires the development of optics that function in this spectral region.
In this work, we developed deep UV photonic crystal optical devices and deep UV resonance Raman imaging spectrometers based on those devices for standoff trace explosive detection purposes. We first developed a novel, proof of concept wide-field Raman imaging spectrometer in the visible spectral region to demonstrate the utility of photonic crystals as wide-field Raman imaging optics. Using knowledge gained during those studies, we then developed a deep UV wide-field Raman imaging spectrometer that utilized 229 nm excitation and a deep UV diffracting photonic crystal to image, detect, and chemically differentiate 10 μg/cm2 quantities of solid explosive at 2.3 m standoff. These studies demonstrated the feasibility and promise of deep UV wide-field imaging and deep UV diffracting photonic crystal optics. Finally, we developed the first deep UV diffracting inverse opal photonic crystal to increase the mechanical durability and shelf life of photonic crystal optical devices, opening the door for the development of field usable deep UV wide-field imaging instrumentation for standoff trace explosive detection.


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Hufziger, Kyle T.kyh11@pitt.edukyh110000-0001-6057-8232
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee MemberGarrett-Roe, Seansgr@pitt.edusgr
Committee MemberWaldeck, Daviddave@pitt.edudave
Committee MemberVelankar, Sachinvelankar@pitt.eduvelankar
Committee ChairAsher, Sanford A.asher@pitt.eduasher
Date: 20 June 2019
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 14 March 2019
Approval Date: 20 June 2019
Submission Date: 8 March 2019
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 173
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Chemistry
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: Photonic crystals, Raman spectroscopy, nanoparticles, standoff explosive detection, wide-field imaging
Date Deposited: 20 Jun 2019 15:39
Last Modified: 20 Jun 2019 15:39

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