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Advanced Development for Defense Science and Technology

Award Information

Department of Defense
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
Award ID:
Program Year/Program:
2007 / SBIR
Agency Tracking Number:
Solicitation Year:
Solicitation Topic Code:
Solicitation Number:
Small Business Information
Southwest Sciences, Inc.
1570 Pacheco Street Suite E-11 Santa Fe, NM 87505-3993
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Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No
Phase 1
Fiscal Year: 2007
Title: Advanced Development for Defense Science and Technology
Agency / Branch: DOD / DARPA
Contract: W31P4Q-08-C-0026
Award Amount: $99,000.00


Southwest Sciences proposes the development of an ultra-sensitive optical spectroscopy technique having applications in explosives and chemical agent detection, and rapid health screening/monitoring for warfighter field diagnostics and health care. The technique, called noise-immune, cavity-enhanced optical heterodyne spectroscopy (NICE-OHMS), was invented about 10 years ago, but has remained a research laboratory technique. It was considered too complex for commercial development. We plan to take advantage of recent improvements in enabling technologies to make NICE-OHMS a reliable, field-rugged, and portable method. If successful, we anticipate two- to four-orders of magnitude sensitivity improvement over competing spectroscopic methods at only modestly higher expense. The proposed technology has numerous military and commercial applications. Our approach starts with the detection of ultra-trace (part per billion, or lower concentrations) gases in exhaled breath that are markers for disease and injury. This application has both military and civilian uses. Obvious target compounds include nitric oxide, acetone which is a marker for diabetes and ketosis, ethylene as an indicator for radiation exposure, ethane and higher alkanes as markers for lipid damage, and dimethyl sulfide for kidney function. In addition, numerous metabolic tests involve ingestion of 13C-labeled compounds followed by time-resolved, high precision measurements of 13CO2/12CO2 changes.

Principal Investigator:

David S. Bomse
Principal Research Scientist

Business Contact:

Alan C. Stanton
Small Business Information at Submission:

1570 Pacheco Street, Suite E-11 Santa Fe, NM 87505

EIN/Tax ID: 850340320
Number of Employees:
Woman-Owned: No
Minority-Owned: No
HUBZone-Owned: No