Thin Film Fluorescent Sensors for Explosives Detection [INACTIVE]

Download Project Report (Phase 2, Year 3)

Project Description


Trace detection of gas phase explosives is accomplished using an array of fluorescent compounds. The fluorescent materials are chosen to be readily available, inexpensive, and have a high conversion efficiency for light emission. The strong signal strength of the light emission leads to more sensitive detection while the use of an array leads to excellent selectivity. This combination of features reduces the number of false positives and false negatives. Fabrication techniques are used to generate a sensor where the light signal is amplified, which allows detection of explosives at their natural room temperature vapor pressure, down to the parts per trillion range or lower.

Students funded on this project will continue to be supported via the ALERT Science and Engineering Workforce Development Program so as not to impact their degrees.


Detection of trace quantities of explosives in the gas phase is a pressing societal issue, of special importance to homeland security and a significant challenge to analytical chemistry.
Phase 2, Year 3 - Annual Report
Project Leader
  • William B. Euler
    Professor & Chair, Chemistry

Faculty and Staff Currently Involved in Project
  • Richard Sweetman
    High School Teacher
    Middletown High School

Students Currently Involved in Project
  • Mona Alhasani