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25 April 2008 Remote chemical biological and explosive agent detection using a robot-based Raman detector
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Current practice for the detection of chemical, biological and explosive (CBE) agent contamination on environmental surfaces requires a human to don protective gear, manually take a sample and then package it for subsequent laboratory analysis. Ground robotics now provides an operator-safe way to make these critical measurements. We describe the development of a robot-deployed surface detection system for CBE agents that does not require the use of antibodies or DNA primers. The detector is based on Raman spectroscopy, a reagentless technique that has the ability to simultaneously identify multiple chemical and biological hazards. Preliminary testing showed the ability to identify CBE simulants in 10 minutes or less. In an operator-blind study, this detector was able to correctly identify the presence of trace explosive on weathered automobile body panels. This detector was successfully integrated on a highly agile robot platform capable of both high speed and rough terrain operation. The detector is mounted to the end of five-axis arm that allows precise interrogation of the environmental surfaces. The robot, arm and Raman detector are JAUS compliant, and are controlled via a radio link from a single operator control unit. Results from the integration testing and from limited field trials are presented.
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Charles W. Gardner, Rachel Wentworth, Patrick J. Treado, Parag Batavia, and Gary Gilbert "Remote chemical biological and explosive agent detection using a robot-based Raman detector", Proc. SPIE 6962, Unmanned Systems Technology X, 69620T (25 April 2008);

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