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Sensors 2009, 9(4), 2697-2705; doi:10.3390/s90402697

Quantum Cascade Laser-Based Photoacoustic Sensor for Trace Detection of Formaldehyde Gas

Dipartimento Interateneo di Fisica “M. Merlin”, Università and Politecnico of Bari, and Laboratorio Regionale CNR-INFM “LIT3”, Bari, I-70126, Italy
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Received: 6 February 2009 / Revised: 2 April 2009 / Accepted: 16 April 2009 / Published: 16 April 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue State-of-the-Art Sensors Technology in Italy)
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Abstract

We report on the development of a photoacoustic sensor for the detection of formaldehyde (CH2O) using a thermoelectrically cooled distributed-feedback quantum cascade laser operating in pulsed mode at 5.6 mm. A resonant photoacoustic cell, equipped with four electret microphones, is excited in its first longitudinal mode at 1,380 Hz. The absorption line at 1,778.9 cm-1 is selected for CH2O detection. A detection limit of 150 parts per billion in volume in nitrogen is achieved using a 10 seconds time constant and 4 mW laser power. Measurements in ambient air will require water vapour filters.
Keywords: Formaldehyde; Quantum cascade laser; Photoacoustic spectroscopy; Trace gas sensor Formaldehyde; Quantum cascade laser; Photoacoustic spectroscopy; Trace gas sensor
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Elia, A.; Di Franco, C.; Spagnolo, V.; Lugarà, P.M.; Scamarcio, G. Quantum Cascade Laser-Based Photoacoustic Sensor for Trace Detection of Formaldehyde Gas. Sensors 2009, 9, 2697-2705.

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