In the study of global warming, obtaining good data demands widely deployed, accurate, and reliable sensors for identifying and understanding the origins, sources, and fates of greenhouse gases. Sensing technologies based on tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy are starting to provide some of this critical data.

Dr. Richard R. Hark, a professor in the Department of Chemistry at Juniata College in Huntingdon, Pennsylvania, discusses his work with LIBS in applications such as forensic science, conflict minerals, and geochemical fingerprinting.



Determination of trace metals in oil and petroleum typically is based on ICP-OES methods, requiring signficant sample preparation and expensive instrumentation. This article presents an alternative method, based on the use of a handheld energy-dispersive X-ray fluorescence analyzer, that involves minimal sample preparation, uses authentic standards for calibration, gives low parts-per-million detection limits, and provides significant time and cost savings.

Issue PDF

July 01, 2014

Click the title above to open the Spectroscopy July 2014 regular issue, Vol 29 No 7, in an interactive PDF format.