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Increasing Selectivity for TNT-Based Explosive Detection by Synchronous Luminescence and Derivative Spectroscopy with Quantum Yields of Selected Aromatic Amines

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Abstract:

The detection of explosive material is at the forefront of current analytical problems. A detection method is desired that is not restricted to detecting only explosive materials, but is also capable of identifying the origin and type of explosive. It is essential that a detection method have the selectivity to distinguish among compounds in a mixture of explosives. The nitro compounds found in explosives have low fluorescent yields or are considered to be non-fluorescent; however, after reduction, the amino compounds exhibit relatively high fluorescence. We discuss how to increase selectivity of explosive detection using fluorescence; this includes synchronous luminescence and derivative spectroscopy with appropriate smoothing. By implementing synchronous luminescence and derivative spectroscopy, we were able to resolve the reduction products of one major TNT-based explosive compound, 2,4-diaminotoluene, and the reduction products of other minor TNT-based explosives in a mixture. We also report for the first time the quantum yields of these important compounds. Relative quantum yields are useful in establishing relative fluorescence intensities and are an important spectroscopic measurement of molecules. Our approach allows for rapid, sensitive, and selective detection with the discrimination necessary to distinguish among various explosives.

Keywords: AROMATIC AMINES; DERIVATIVE SPECTROSCOPY; EXPLOSIVE VAPORS; FLUORESCENCE; NITRO AROMATICS; QUANTUM YIELDS; SYNCHRONOUS LUMINESCENCE

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1366/000370207779701343

Affiliations: Department of Chemistry, University of Idaho, P.O. Box 442343 Moscow, Idaho 83844-2343

Publication date: January 1, 2007

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