SBIR Phase I: Optical Ethylene Monitor for Food Crop Quality Assurance

Award Information
Agency:
National Science Foundation
Branch
n/a
Amount:
$100,000.00
Award Year:
2008
Program:
SBIR
Phase:
Phase I
Contract:
0738329
Award Id:
88212
Agency Tracking Number:
0738329
Solicitation Year:
n/a
Solicitation Topic Code:
n/a
Solicitation Number:
n/a
Small Business Information
67 CONDESA RD, SANTA FE, NM, 87508
Hubzone Owned:
N
Minority Owned:
N
Woman Owned:
N
Duns:
134161533
Principal Investigator:
Jeffrey Pilgrim
PhD
(505) 466-3953
jpilgrim@vistaphotonics.com
Business Contact:
Jeffrey Pilgrim
PhD
(505) 466-3953
jpilgrim@vistaphotonics.com
Research Institution:
n/a
Abstract
This Small Business Innovation Research Phase I research project will determine the performance and operating specifications for a high-sensitivity laser spectrometer suitable for selective detection of trace ethylene during crop processing applications. Crops react to environmental stressors by releasing ethylene at low levels. If these levels can be detected, stressors may be mitigated before crop viability is compromised, significantly reducing waste. For post-harvest crop processing, real-time detection of rot or senescence can prevent contamination from spreading to entire batches during storage or transport. Present monitors are inadequate due to sensitivity, selectivity, time response or cost. New faster monitors will be enabling components for controlled plant growth, early detection of stress, precise application of ripening inhibitors and other chemical agents, and successful long-term storage and delivery. This tightly monitored life cycle from seed to seed will provide today's agricultural industry the tools to continually increase production yields. This compact, rugged, real-time, parts-per-billion gaseous ethylene analyzer will be suitable for widespread application in the agricultural industry. It will reduce the loss of crops due to undiscovered environmental, processing, storage and transport stress. The basic technology can extend to other trace gas detection applications including biomedical breath diagnosis. Additional applications abound in detection of trace environmental species important to health, occupational safety, and global warming.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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