Date of Award

2011

Level of Access

Campus-Only Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Department

Electrical and Computer Engineering

Advisor

John Vetelino

Second Committee Member

David Neivandt

Third Committee Member

Todd Mlsna

Abstract

Due to extensive use of Peroxide Based Explosives (PBEs) in terrorist and insurgent activities, the need for a rapid and accurate sensor is paramount. PBEs can be prepared from items found ubiquitously such as acetone and hydrogen peroxide. Current tests to detect PBEs typically require swabbing of suspected items, which is time consuming and may not be remotely deployed. The results of such tests are qualitative in nature and false positives are common. A need exists for a sensor that can detect PBE constituents in air. The current work is investigating the utility of employing the Lateral Field Excited (LFE) acoustic wave sensor platform for PBE detection. Specifically, a polymer film that is sensitive to both acetone and hydrogen peroxide vapor has been deposited on an LFE platform. The resulting sensor has been demonstrated to be capable of identifying ppm concentrations of the PBE constituent vapors in air.

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