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4 May 2012 Multidimensional detection of explosives and explosive signatures via laser electrospray mass spectrometry
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Nitro- and inorganic-based energetic material is vaporized at atmospheric pressure using nonresonant, 70 femtosecond laser pulses prior to electrospray post-ionization and transfer into a time-of-flight mass spectrometer for mass analysis. Measurements of a nitro-based energetic molecule, cyclotrimethylenetrinitramine (RDX), adsorbed on metal and dielectric surfaces indicate nonresonant vaporization of intact molecules, demonstrating the universality of laser electrospray mass spectrometry (LEMS) technique for explosives. In addition, RDX is analyzed at a distance of 2 meters to demonstrate the remote detection capability of LEMS. Finally, the analysis and multivariate statistical classification of inorganic-based explosives containing ammonium nitrate, chlorate, perchlorate, black powder, and an organic-based explosive is presented, further expanding the capabilities of the LEMS technique for detection of energetic materials.
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John J. Brady, Paul M. Flanigan IV, Johnny J. Perez, Elizabeth J. Judge, and Robert J. Levis "Multidimensional detection of explosives and explosive signatures via laser electrospray mass spectrometry", Proc. SPIE 8358, Chemical, Biological, Radiological, Nuclear, and Explosives (CBRNE) Sensing XIII, 83580X (4 May 2012);

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