Ambient formaldehyde detection with a laser spectrometer based on difference-frequency generation in PPLN

D. Rehle, D. Leleux, M. Erdelyi, F. Tittel, M. Fraser, S. Friedfeld

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A laser spectrometer based on difference-frequency generation in periodically poled LiNbO3 (PPLN) has been used to quantify atmospheric formaldehyde with a detection limit of 0.32 parts per billion in a given volume (ppbV) using specifically developed data-processing techniques. With state-of-the-art fiber-coupled diode-laser pump sources at 1083 nm and 1561 nm, difference-frequency radiation has been generated in the 3.53-μm (2832-cm-1) spectral region. Formaldehyde in ambient air in the 1- to 10-ppb V range has been detected continuously for nine and five days at two separate field sites in the Greater Houston area operated by the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission (TNRCC) and the Houston Regional Monitoring Corporation (HRM). The acquired spectroscopic data are compared with results obtained by a well-established wet-chemical o-(2,3,4,5,6-pentafluorobenzyl) hydroxylamine (PFBHA) technique.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)947-952
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Physics B: Lasers and Optics
Issue number8
StatePublished - Jan 1 2001


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)

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