Projects per year
The development of a broadly and accurately tunable single-frequency mid-infrared laser source and its application to a sensitive laser absorption detection method are described. Photo-thermal interferometric spectroscopy is employed as a phase-sensitive method to detect the minute refractive index change caused by the heating of a gas under laser radiation. A separate probe beam allows for the spectrally-interesting mid-infrared region to be examined whilst utilizing low cost, high detectivity photodetectors in the visible/near-infrared region. We also describe the implementation of a Sagnac interferometer to minimize the effects of environmental perturbation and provide inherent passive stability. A continuous-wave ring-cavity pump-enhanced OPO has been developed to provide excitation light from 3–4 µm at 140 mW with the ability to mode-hop tune continuously over 90 cm−1 in 0.07 cm−1 steps. Complementary use of both detection apparatus and excitation source has allowed for presence of ethane to be detected down to 200 parts per billion.
- Bristol Quantum Information Institute