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March 8 - 12, 2021


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Virtual Pittcon 2021

Miniature Near-infrared Instruments: Technologies, Opportunities and Challenges

  • Session Number: G12-06
Wednesday, March 10, 2021: 10:25 AM - 10:45 AM


Richard Crocombe
Crocombe Spectroscopic Consulting


The combination of advances in mobile electronics (computing power, memory, displays, user interfaces, etc.) and photonics (detectors, coating technology, MEMS and MOEMS, etc.) now enables very small, and in some cases very low cost spectrometers. This is most evident in the region covered by silicon detectors (~400nm - ~1000nm), and to a lesser extent in the region covered by InGaAs detectors (~1000 - ~1700nm, with ‘extended’ InGaAs covering wavelengths to ~2400nm). In the silicon detector region prices are such that spectrometers can be consumer items, an in the InGaAs region, spectrometers with respectable performance are available for around $2000. At least two miniature instruments are now commercially available covering the range 400-1700nm at a cost in the low thousands of dollars. The challenge in the near-infrared has always been to create rugged and reliable applications, whether qualitative or quantitative, given the somewhat non-specific nature of near-infrared spectra, and a considerable body of work has achieved this starting with the work of Karl Norris in the late 1950s, and the Canadian Grain Commission in the 1970s.The statistical requirements are well-known and well-documented in the scientific literature. Miniature and portable UV-visible spectroscopy was on a different track, essentially automating colorimetric tests developed over a period of 150 years. But with the drop in cost of these spectrometers, especially in the silicon detector region, putting them within the reach of consumers, is the technology now ahead of the applications? And what does it take to develop applications for consumers who are unfamiliar with analytical concepts like stray light, heterogeneous samples, layered samples, etc.? Can you do good spectroscopy with a smartphone camera? This presentation will survey some of the low-cost technologies and instruments currently available, and discuss what applications development means in this context.

Additional Info

Keywords: Please select up to 4 keywords ONLY:
Instrumentation,Materials Characterization,Method Development,Infrared Spectroscopy

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