Miniature, Rugged Vacuum System for Portable Mass Spectrometers
Small Business Information
P.O. Box 71, 16 Great Hollow Road, Hanover, NH, 03755-0071
AbstractThe Department of Homeland Security, the Military, and civilian first-responders have an urgent need for sensitive detectors of harmful materials such as biological and chemical warfare agents, toxic industrial chemicals, and explosives. Handheld instruments must be sensitive, be able to detect a wide variety of target compounds in a matter of seconds, reliably discriminate between innocuous and harmful compounds, and be relatively inexpensive. A technology with great promise for addressing all of these requirements is miniature ion trap mass spectrometry (MIT-MS). These relatively simple devices are capable of detecting, identifying, and quantitating target compounds with great sensitivity and high levels of confidence. Mass spectrometry, nearly unique among analytical instrumental methods, combines high sensitivity with generality (i.e., applicability towards all compound classes) thus offering the high molecular information necessary for confident identification. One of the biggest factors preventing the development of truly low-cost and portable MIT-MS is the cost, size, mass, and power requirements of the high vacuum system required for its operation. Based on our highly successful Phase I project, Creare proposes to address this need by completing the development of an innovative, miniature, rugged, vacuum system during Phase II.
* information listed above is at the time of submission.