16 December 2004 Characterization of chemical warfare G-agent hydrolysis products by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy
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The United States and its allies have been increasingly challenged by terrorism, and since the September 11, 2001 attacks and the war in Afghanistan and Iraq, homeland security has become a national priority. The simplicity in manufacturing chemical warfare agents, the relatively low cost, and previous deployment raises public concern that they may also be used by terrorists or rogue nations. We have been investigating the ability of surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) to detect extremely low concentrations (e.g. part-per-billion) of chemical agents, as might be found in poisoned water. Since trace quantities of nerve agents can be hydrolyzed in the presence of water, we have expanded our studies to include such degradation products. Our SERS-active medium consists of silver or gold nanoparticles incorporated into a sol-gel matrix, which is immobilized in a glass capillary. The choice of sol-gel precursor allows controlling hydrophobicity, while the porous silica network offers a unique environment for stabilizing the SERS-active metals. Here we present the use of these metal-doped sol-gels to selectively enhance the Raman signal of the hydrolyzed products of the G-series nerve agents.
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Frank E. Inscore, Alan D. Gift, Paul Maksymiuk, and Stuart Farquharson "Characterization of chemical warfare G-agent hydrolysis products by surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy", Proc. SPIE 5585, Chemical and Biological Point Sensors for Homeland Defense II, (16 December 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.580461; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.580461

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