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20 September 2021 Detection and identification of hazardous narcotics and new psychoactive substances (NPS)
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In the past decade, consumption of illegal and controlled street drugs has steadily increased. According to the latest World Drug Report, released by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC)1, more people are using drugs, and there are more drugs, and more types of drugs, than ever. Around 269 million people used drugs worldwide in 2018, which is 30 per cent more than in 20091. The growth in global drug supply and demand poses challenges to law enforcement, compounds health risks and complicates efforts to prevent and treat drug use disorders. Due to COVID-19, traffickers may have to find new routes and methods and opioid shortages may result in people seeking out more readily available substances such as alcohol, benzodiazepines or mixing with synthetic drugs.1 Herein, we study the use of Raman SORS technology for rapid identification of narcotics in a range of concentrations – from pure form (as it is smuggled or transported) to street forms and products, often mixed with conventional cutting agents, with the potential to improve safety, efficiency and critical decision making in incident management, search operations, policing and ports and border operations.
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Ana M. Blanco-Rodrigues and Robert Stokes "Detection and identification of hazardous narcotics and new psychoactive substances (NPS)", Proc. SPIE 11869, Counterterrorism, Crime Fighting, Forensics, and Surveillance Technologies V, 1186908 (20 September 2021);

Raman spectroscopy

Psychoactive substances



Chemical analysis


Signal processing

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