From the middle of the last decade a variety of phenomena in molecular non-equilibrium plasmas in which many short-lived and stable species are produced have been successfully studied with quantum cascade laser absorption spectroscopy (QCLAS) in the mid-infrared spectral range. It has been possible to determine absolute concentrations of species, temperatures, degrees of dissociation, dynamics of reaction processes and phenomena involving plasma surface interactions using spectroscopy thereby providing a link with chemical and kinetic modelling of the plasma. The recent availability of external cavity QCLs offers a promising new avenue for plasma diagnostics in general and for multi component detection in particular.

© 2014 Optical Society of America

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