|dc.description.abstract||Due to the ability to perform simultaneous, multi-element and real-time analysis without pretreatment and doing from a distance, laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) in standoff mode is now considered a cutting-edge analytical technology. All these features have allowed its application in various fields such as security, environment, cultural heritage protection and space exploration, among the more outstanding.
Nonetheless, the fact of working to long distances involves greater difficulties than in a lab-scale. Thus, in a first part of this memory, the behavior of the analytical signal has been assessed. On the other hand, a second part demonstrates the applicability of the technique in standoff mode for solving real-life problems.
• Fundamental studies
1. Main causes affecting the uncertainty of the analytical signal in standoff LIBS. One of the most sensitive issues in standoff LIBS is maybe the large variability observed in the analytical response of distant targets. Therefore, in this work, a standoff LIBS sensor has been used to assessment of the laser beam delivering up to a distant target as well as the properties of the light emitted from the plasma induced gathered by the sensor.
• Applications standoff LIBS
1. Evaluation of the Cultural Heritage: Malaga Cathedral. Cultural heritage is a valuable source of history and a unique and irreplaceable legacy of our past. While sometimes an artwork can be transported to the laboratory for its analysis, in other cases this option is not feasible. The ease compaction in mobile platforms of LIBS instrumentation for in situ analysis, allows for moving the system sensor to the location of the sample. For first time a standoff LIBS system has been used to characterize and analyze the composition of building materials as well as potential sources of contamination in a historic building on difficult to access areas, since this technology only requires a clear line of sight to the target.
I. Location and identification of explosive-contaminated fingerprint. Nowadays, it is clear that the detection of explosives due to numerous terrorist attacks requires a special attention. LIBS is an attractive technology to anticipating this type of threats. In the present work, the ability of a mobile LIBS sensor to locate and identify fingerprints of explosives residues (DNT, TNT, RDX, PETN and chloratite ) on different surfaces (aluminum and glass) from a minimum distance of 30m has been demonstrated. Chemical distribution maps of the different residues with 100% effectiveness were developed. However, despite the effectiveness of the technique in the localization and detection of explosives residues, one of the main problems is the identification of products that share a similar elemental composition, and thus a similarity in the analytical response. In this memory have been developed and implemented chemometric algorithms, which are capable of adapting to different working ranges, to distinguish residues of organic explosives of traces of dairy products, such as olive oil, motor oil, hand cream, gasoline, fuel oil, etc. on a metal surface (aluminum). This strategy allows categorize the residues assessed with a 100% accuracy and error rates below 5 %.
II. Forensic studies for the determination of radiological material. Although radioactivity has numerous applications in everyday life, the danger of a radiological dispersal event, either by natural causes or malicious (dirty bombs) is more than evident. Therefore, the detection and identification of explosives as well as their monitoring and quantification from a safe location is demanded. The potential of standoff LIBS to scan, analyze and quickly characterize the radiological contamination in various objects of street furniture has been here evaluated. The results have demonstrated the selectivity and sensitivity of the technology to detect radioactive surrogates such as Co, Ba, Sr, Cs, Ir and U on substrates of aluminum, clay, concrete and glass. It have been also demonstrated the capabilities of the technique for simultaneous and in situ analysis of explosive and radiological evidence in a post-detonation scenario.||es_ES