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Spectrochim Acta A Mol Biomol Spectrosc. 2006 Apr;63(5):952-8. Epub 2006 Feb 24.

Novel Helmholtz-based photoacoustic sensor for trace gas detection at ppm level using GaInAsSb/GaAlAsSb DFB lasers.

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  • 1Omnisens SA, Science Park, CH-1015 Lausanne, Switzerland.


A new and compact photoacoustic sensor for trace gas detection in the 2-2.5 microm atmospheric window is reported. Both the development of antimonide-based DFB lasers with singlemode emission in this spectral range and a novel design of photoacoustic cell adapted to the characteristics of these lasers are discussed. The laser fabrication was made in two steps. The structure was firstly grown by molecular beam epitaxy then a metallic DFB grating was processed. The photoacoustic cell is based on a Helmholtz resonator that was designed in order to fully benefit from the highly divergent emission of the antimonide laser. An optimized modulation scheme based on wavelength modulation of the laser source combined with second harmonic detection has been implemented for efficient suppression of wall noise. Using a 2211 nm laser, sub-ppm detection limit has been demonstrated for ammonia.

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