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Advances in Optical Technologies
Volume 2012 (2012), Article ID 808541, 5 pages
Research Article

Chemical Warfare Agents Analyzer Based on Low Cost, Room Temperature, and Infrared Microbolometer Smart Sensors

Centro Ricerche Elettro Ottiche, SS.17 Località Boschetto, 67100 L’Aquila, Italy

Received 2 August 2012; Revised 26 September 2012; Accepted 26 September 2012

Academic Editor: Antoni Rogalski

Copyright © 2012 Carlo Corsi et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Advanced IR emitters and sensors are under development for high detection probability, low false alarm rate, and identification capability of toxic gases. One of the most reliable techniques to identify the gas species is absorption spectroscopy, especially in the medium infrared spectral range, where most of existing toxic compounds exhibit their strongest rotovibrational absorption bands. Following the results obtained from simulations and analysis of expected absorption spectra, a compact nondispersive infrared multispectral system has been designed and developed for security applications. It utilizes a few square millimeters thermal source, a novel design multipass cell, and a smart architecture microbolometric sensor array coupled to a linear variable spectral filter to perform toxic gases detection and identification. This is done by means of differential absorption spectroscopic measurements in the spectral range of the midinfrared. Experimental tests for sensitivity and selectivity have been done with various chemical agents (CAs) gases and a multiplicity of vapour organic compounds (VOCs). Detection capability down to ppm has been demonstrated.