Abstract

We report on spectroscopic real-time detection of  13CH4 in ambient air. Our measurements were carried out by means of cavity leak-out absorption spectroscopy employing a tunable cw laser in the mid-infrared spectral region near λ=3 µm. A CO laser in combination with tunable microwave sideband generation was used as the light source. Using a 50-cm-long ringdown cell with R=99.98% mirrors, we achieved a detection limit of 290 parts in 1012 (ppt)  13CH4 in ambient air (integration time, 100 s). The corresponding noise-equivalent absorption coefficient was 5×10-9/cm.

© 2000 Optical Society of America

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