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7 April 1995 Remote elemental analysis using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy
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Focusing powerful laser pulses on a material produces microplasmas that vaporize and excite a small amount of the sample. By spectrally resolving the plasma emission, the elemental composition of the material can be determined. This method, termed laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS), has many advantages that make it particularly suited for field-based monitoring. These include: simplicity, multielement detection capability, minimal sample preparation, and remote analysis capability. The remote elemental analysis capability of LIBS is unique compared to other conventional analysis methods. Remote analysis can be provided either by direct focusing of laser pulses on a distant object or by fiber optic delivery of the laser energy to the sample. To date, useful spectra of rock samples have been obtained by projecting the laser pulses out to a distance of 24 meters and collecting the plasma light with a simple lens system. Elements at major and minor concentrations were easily detected. Using fiber optic delivery of the laser pulses, LIBS spectra can be obtained from samples in relatively inaccessible locations (e.g. down a borehole, in a reactor). Laser pulses of 80 mJ at 10 Hz repetition rate have been used to remotely generate the laser plasmas and to collect the plasma light using a single fiber optic.
© (1995) COPYRIGHT Society of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE). Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.
David A. Cremers, Monty J. Ferris, Clara Y. Han, J. D. Blacic, and Donald R. Pettit "Remote elemental analysis using laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy", Proc. SPIE 2385, Advanced Optical Methods for Ultrasensitive Detection, (7 April 1995);

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