M. Brandstetter, A. Genner, K. Anic, B. Lendl:
"Tunable Mid-IR Lasers: A New Avenue To Robust And Versatile Physical Chemosensors";
A novel approach for a physical chemosensor for liquids based on mid-infrared (mid-IR) laser spectroscopy is
presented. Mid-infrared sensor systems access chemical information directly through measuring vibrational spectra
of the samples under investigation. The introduction of mid-IR Quantum Cascade Lasers (QCLs) with their high
spectral power density opens up new possibilities in liquid phase sensing. This concept is predestined for
transmission measurements in highly absorbing matrices, such as aqueous phases. In a first step a pulsed External-
Cavity QCL (EC-QCL), tunable from 1030 - 1230 cm-1, was employed to perform transmission measurements of
physiological solutions of path lengths > 125 m, thus significantly improving measurement capabilities of mid-IR
sensors employing thermal light sources. Furthermore, the signal-to-noise ratios achieved compete with those
obtainable with state-of-the-art FT-IR spectrometers. Results on direct determination of glucose and lactate in
aqueous solutions are reported.
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