Most organic and many inorganic materials absorb strongly in specific wavelength ranges in the deep UV between about 220nm and 300nm. Excitation within these absorption bands results in native fluorescence emission. Each compound or composite material, such as a bacterial spore, has a unique excitation-emission fingerprint that can be used to provide information about the material. The sensitivity and specificity with which these materials can be detected and identified depends on the excitation wavelength and the number and location of observation wavelengths.We will present data on our deep ultraviolet Targeted Ultraviolet Chemical Sensors that demonstrate the sensitivity and specificity of the sensors. In particular, we will demonstrate the ability to quantitatively differentiate a wide range of biochemical agent targets against a wide range of background materials. We will describe the relationship between spectral resolution and specificity in target identification, as well as simple, fast, algorithms to identify materials.Hand-held, battery operated instruments using a deep UV laser and multi-band detection have been developed and deployed on missions to the Antarctic, the Arctic, and the deep ocean with the capability of detecting a single bacterial spore and to differentiate a wide range of organic and biological compounds
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