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Open AccessArticle

Environmental Monitoring of Methane with Quartz-Enhanced Photoacoustic Spectroscopy Exploiting an Electronic Hygrometer to Compensate the H2O Influence on the Sensor Signal

1
PolySense Lab-Physics Department, University and Polytechnic of Bari, CNR-IFN, 70126 Bari, Italy
2
Photonics Research Group, Department of Electrical and Information Engineering, Polytechnic University of Bari, 70126 Bari, Italy
3
Thorlabs GmbH, Münchner Weg 1, 85232 Bergkirchen, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sensors 2020, 20(10), 2935; https://doi.org/10.3390/s20102935
Received: 17 April 2020 / Revised: 17 May 2020 / Accepted: 19 May 2020 / Published: 22 May 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Optical Spectroscopy, Sensing, and Imaging from UV to THz Range)
A dual-gas sensor based on the combination of a quartz-enhanced photoacoustic spectroscopy (QEPAS) sensor and an electronic hygrometer was realized for the simultaneous detection of methane (CH4) and water vapor (H2O) in air. The QEPAS sensor employed an interband cascade laser operating at 3.34 μm capable of targeting a CH4 absorption line at 2988.8 cm−1 and a water line at 2988.6 cm−1. Water vapor was measured with both the electronic hygrometer and the QEPAS sensor for comparison. The measurement accuracy provided by the hygrometer enabled the adjustment of methane QEPAS signal with respect to the water vapor concentration to retrieve the actual CH4 concentration. The sensor was tested by performing prolonged measurements of CH4 and H2O over 60 h to demonstrate the effectiveness of this approach for environmental monitoring applications. View Full-Text
Keywords: quartz-enhanced photoacoustic spectroscopy; methane; hygrometer; relaxation promoter; environmental monitoring quartz-enhanced photoacoustic spectroscopy; methane; hygrometer; relaxation promoter; environmental monitoring
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Elefante, A.; Menduni, G.; Rossmadl, H.; Mackowiak, V.; Giglio, M.; Sampaolo, A.; Patimisco, P.; Passaro, V.M.N.; Spagnolo, V. Environmental Monitoring of Methane with Quartz-Enhanced Photoacoustic Spectroscopy Exploiting an Electronic Hygrometer to Compensate the H2O Influence on the Sensor Signal. Sensors 2020, 20, 2935.

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