Laser-Induced Breakdown Spectroscopy (LIBS) for Real-Time Detection of Halon Alternative Agents

Report No. ARL-TR-2128
Authors: Williamson, Cynthia K.; Daniel, Robert G.; McNesby, Kevin L.; Miziolek, Andrzej W.
Date/Pages: November 1999; 35 pages
Abstract: We report results of an evaluation of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) for the detection of candidate halon replacement compounds (CF4, CF3H, CF2H2, and C2F3H). The fundamental (1.064 micrometers) from a Nd:YAG Q-switched pulsed laser was focused into an air flow containing 0.0005-5% of the analyte halocarbon compounds. The laser-produced plasma emission consists of a large number of intense fluorine atom lines in the 600-850-nm spectral range. Limit-of-detection studies indicate that LIBS can detect these compounds in the parts-per-million range. Also, we have recorded single-shot LIBS spectra with good S/N using an intensified photodiode array. Our results indicate that LIBS is a promising detection technique for in-situ and real time measurement of halons during use in full-scale fire-suppression testing.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: November 1, 1999