Detection Efficiency Comparison of the UV-APS and TACBIO using Inert Fluorescent and Biological Particles


The article on “Detection Efficiency Comparison of the UV-APS and TACBIO using Inert Fluorescent and Biological Particles” published in Journal of Bioterrorism & Biodefence.

Airborne CB threats have evolved into a serious and omnipresent battlefield threat against US military forces. Real time sampling and detection of airborne CB threats is an essential tool in the war against terrorism. In the battlefield arena it is necessary to detect, sample, and identify the presence of chemical, biological, and nuclear aerosols in near real time to mount an adequate defense and reduce casualties.

Government agencies employ portable fluorescent based aerosol detectors to provide real-time detection of dangerous airborne biological particles, and initiate precautionary measures such as respirator use or evacuation of an area until the detected hazards are eliminated.

The Ultraviolet Aerodynamic Particle Sizer (UV-APS) is a point detection particle spectrometer. This instruments provide real time data on particle diameter and particle fluorescence. The UV-APS provides particle size in the range of 0.5–20 μm, with 52 channels of resolution.

The TACBIO II sensor, is a small, portable point detector which measures only the fluorescence of particles, but does not provide size data. A high power light emitting diode (LED) provides the deep-ultraviolet (UV) light source to excite the particles at 270 nm and produce fluorescence and scattered light off of particles.

The detection efficiency of UV-APS was close to 100% and ranged from 97% to 102.6% for PSL microspheres and from 99% to 108.61% for bacteria species for all particle generation rates. On the other hand, detection efficiency was slightly lower for the TACBIO compared to UV-APS and ranged from 92.5% to 108.7% for PSL microspheres and from 62.67% to 100.83% for biological particles for all particle generation rates.

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