Military and Security Applications

The use of IMS to detect chemical warfare agents has already been described. Following on from this application, government research establishments turned their attention to narcotics and explosives. Given the chemical properties of these materials it was not surprising that IMS was found to provide an effective solution to the problem of screening for such materials. Due to the low volatility and trace levels of the substances, these devices use thermal desorption sample introduction systems. The sample is obtained by wiping or vacuuming the surfaces associated with the suspected contamination (for example vehicle interiors, luggage, skin and clothing). Microscopic particles of the analytes are collected onto a filter and thermally desorbed off this medium into the instrument. The devices are installed with a library of spectra and will alarm and identify the substance if a sample produces a matching signal. This method has proven successful at detecting trace levels of a wide range of drugs and explosives materials from a variety of situations, and such devices have become commonplace in airports and at other security checkpoints.

Solar Panel Basics

Solar Panel Basics

Global warming is a huge problem which will significantly affect every country in the world. Many people all over the world are trying to do whatever they can to help combat the effects of global warming. One of the ways that people can fight global warming is to reduce their dependence on non-renewable energy sources like oil and petroleum based products.

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