Abstract

In collaboration with the Jefferson County Department of Health and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the University of Alabama in Huntsville developed a novel sensor for detecting very low levels of volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This sensor uses a commercial Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectrometer, a commercial long-path IR gas cell, a commercial acoustic Stirling cyrocooler, and a custom cryogen-free cryotrap to improve sensitivity in an autonomous system with on-board quality control and quality assurance. Laboratory and initial field results show this methodology is sensitive to and well-suited for a wide variety of VOC atmospheric research and monitoring applications, including EPA National Air Toxics Trends Stations and the National Core monitoring network.

© 2015 Optical Society of America

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