ADELPHI, Md. — As the need for chemical, biological and explosive detection becomes more relevant in today’s world, the U.S. Army Research Laboratory is leading the effort in laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, which is capable of highly advanced materials analysis.
The technology has shown significant advancements since its inception in the 1980’s. Today, LIBS technology is used for multiple purposes, including the 2011 mission to Mars, detection of chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, and explosive material, and materials matching in forensic cases.
Dr. Andrzej Miziolek and his collaborators in ARL’s Advanced Weapons Concepts Branch are at the forefront of standoff detection pertaining to trace amounts of hazardous materials using the LIBS technology. Their work is an important example of applying spectroscopy to difficult problems in chemical analysis.