April 1st 2010
Interest in vibrational spectroscopy, principally Raman and mid-IR (FT-IR) continues to increase as these analytical techniques may be applied to a wide variety of fields, including the safety/security sector. Raman and FT-IR have seen rapid deployment for use in homeland security applications, largely due to the high chemical specificity which allows robust identification. In this article, we discuss the application of the latest portable, rugged Raman and FT-IR handhelds, enabling robust identification of explosives, TICs, TIMs, and narcotics in the field. This article introduces explosives, their different classes, and the applicability of Raman and FT-IR spectroscopy to identify their components (commercial, HMEs, and IEDs) or precursors.