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Absorption Spectroscopy Measurements in Optically Dense Explosive Fireballs Using a Modeless Broadband Dye Laser

Volume 63, Number 9 (Sept. 2009) Page 1075-1080

Glumac, Nick


A modeless broadband dye laser is applied to probe inside optically dense fireballs generated by high explosives using single-shot, high resolution absorption spectroscopy. Despite attenuation of the main beam by 98%, high signal-to-noise ratio absorption spectra of Al, Ti, and AlO are readily obtained at resolutions of 0.007 nm, and luminosity from the fireball is strongly rejected. Detection limits for atomic species are less than 200 ppb. The method offers good time resolution of chemistry within the fireball, and scaling laws suggest that this technique should be valid in explosives tests at least up to the gram scale.