Abstract

A portable cavity ringdown spectroscopy (CRDS) apparatus was used to detect effluents from small test fires in the Fire Emulator/Detector Evaluator (FE/DE) and a small room in the Building Fire and Research Laboratory at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST). The output from two lasers is combined to detect four combustion gases, CO, CO2, HCN, and C2H2, near simultaneously using CRDS. The goal of this work was to demonstrate the feasibility of using a CRDS sensor as a fire detector. Fire effluents were extracted from several test facilities and measurements of CO, CO2, HCN, and C2H2 were obtained every 25–30 s. In the FE/DE test, peak concentrations of the gases from smoldering paper were 420partsin106(ppm) CO, 1600ppm CO2, 530partsin109(ppb) HCN, and 440ppb C2H2. Peak gas concentrations from the small room were 270ppm CO, 2100ppm CO2, and 310ppb C2H2.

© 2009 Optical Society of America

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