Optogalvanic Detection of Laser-Desorbed Silver in a Low-Pressure Argon Atmosphere

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We report the first detailed investigation of laser-desorbed material probed by laser optogalvanic spectroscopy. When Ar transitions in the 555-575 nm region are excited, the laser-desorbed silver optogalvanic effect (OGE) temporal signal appears as a shoulder on the Ar OGE peak. Our studies show that the shoulder is due to Penning ionization of laser-desorbed Ag by Ar in highly excited states (15.12-15.51 eV). The temporal dependence of the laser desorption process was investigated. It was found that most of the sample was desorbed within, at most, 1200 laser pulses (2 min). A crude estimate of the absolute detection limit obtained here is tens to hundreds of nanograms; use of a dedicated, custom apparatus rather than the commercial, shielded hollow cathode lamp used in this study should permit confirmation of and improvement on this detection limit. The presence of a low-pressure argon atmosphere and the use of moderate laser power density may be crucial for successful application of this technique.

Keywords: Analytical methods; Laser ablation; Laser desorption; Optogalvanic spectroscopy; Penning ionization; Silver

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1366/0003702904087541

Affiliations: 1: Department of Physics and Astronomy and the Diagnostic Instrumentation and Analysis Laboratory, Mississippi State University, P.O. Box 3574, Mississippi State, Mississippi 39762 2: Department of Chemistry, Butler University, 4600 Sunset Avenue, Indianapolis, Indiana 46208

Publication date: May 1, 1990

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