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Homeland Security

Enabling detect-to-warn systems for homeland security

As one of most sensitive detection technologies known, surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) has been investigated by many groups for its potential in early detection of chemical and biological threats.

The unique finger print spectra provided by the Raman signal of a sample can be compared to databases of known substances, providing excellent detection selectivity.  This enables a simple read-out of probability of identification easily interpreted by a non-technical user against 1000’s of potential threats.

Ruggedised light weight first responder systems have already been developed to obtain Raman signals from concentrated samples.  However to identify trace levels of substance to provide the earliest possible warning, the identifiable Raman signals can be increased by more than a million-fold using specially structured surfaces. 

Klarite technology makes this surface enhancement reproducible and reliable enough to allow this technique to be used in homeland security applications targeted toward detect-to-warn applications.

Detection of a sample on a Klarite device is fast - often taking only a few seconds – and is non-destructive.  This means that Klarite can be combined with other detection technologies to further reduce the potential for false positive and false negative readings.

Partners are actively being sought by Mesophotonics Ltd to exploit the homeland security potential of Klarite.

Benefits of Klarite to homeland security

Klarite surface enhanced Raman detection offers numerous benefits to early detection of homeland security threats, including high selectivity and specific identification.

It is extremely sensitive; detection of single molecules - equivalent to one bucket of chemical in the whole Atlantic ocean - has been recorded with variations of surface enhanced Raman technology. The technology is compatible with portable (under 5lb) first responder reader instruments on the market.  It is also water sample compatible.

However these benefits do not have to be taken in isolation, as the technique can be combined with other detection technologies to provide even more robust warning systems. 

Fast detection, in seconds to minutes, with little to no sample preparation, enables the triggering of additional detection elements.  Non-destructive, optical reading enables sample transfer to orthogonal detection techniques for confirmation.

Low-cost, light-weight reading technology enables combined detection technologies to be delivered within budget and weight targets