22nd January, 2007 – Mesophotonics, the world leader in design
and production of stable and reproducible detection surfaces, has
further refined its SE1000 Toolkit for use in Homeland Security
and Defense application areas. Comprising a Mesophotonics Raman
spectrometer and the company’s unique Klarite substrates,
this platform enables faster, trace-level identification of explosive,
chemical and biological samples.
The SE1000 is based around the relatively new technique of Surface
Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) which increases the normally
very weak Raman signals by as much as a million-fold, providing
ultra high sensitivity to detect molecules even at sub-picogram
levels. Until now, SERS has been confined to the laboratory owing
to the instability of the substrates at the heart of the analysis.
Klarite effectively changes the applicability of the technique
by using a substrate with a stable, uniform structure.
“Providing security against Biological, Chemical and
Explosive threats requires a critical level of detection sensitivity,
in addition to the ability to work within a field-based situation.” said
Dr Philip Hargreaves, Director of Business Development and Marketing
at Mesophotonics. “We have conclusively proved fast, efficient
detection of explosive and nerve agent simulants at low levels
in both liquid and vapor phases using our unique Klarite substrates.
These substrates are also stable and reproducible enough to be
used in the field.”
The work at Mesophotonics is announced on the back of a recent
proceedings paper presented by the Army Research Laboratories (ARL)
at SPIE Optics East in October 2006. This work demonstrates the
use of Klarite substrates to detect and identify deadly spores
from organisms such as Bacillus.
Mesophotonics is currently working with several partners in the
Homeland Security and Defense arenas to synergize its SERS detection
technology with existing complementary systems.
The SE1000 SERS Toolkit will be shown at the forthcoming Pittcon
2007 exhibition in Chicago between 25th Feb and March 2nd.