What You Need to Know About Quantum Cascade Laser Analyzers


A quantum cascade laser analyzer is a device that senses particles using lasers. While laser-based analysis technology is nothing new, the recent adoption of quantum cascade lasers over diodes made it an innovation, especially for chemical processing and emissions testing. But, what exactly is it?

Understanding Quantum Cascade Lasers

Simply put, it’s an analyzer that uses quantum cascade lasers -semiconductors that emit infrared (IR) bands to detect the interaction between waves and matter. They’re unipolar and operate based on the quantum theory of repeatedly cascading electrons through quantum wells.

Advantages of QCL Analyzer Technology

What differs these from most laser analyzers is that rather than using the energy gap, it uses the variations of an electron’s wave function, called quantum well energy levels, for transition.This allows their emission to be fine-tuned and reach relatively farther wavelengths simply by adjusting their layers’ thickness, effectively improving accuracy and efficiency of the process.

Because of this, QCL analyzers provide better results than other measurement techniques, like paramagnetic detectors (PMD) and Chemi-luminescence, by:

  • Showing a clearer high-resolution spectroscopy (HRS)
  • Providing near-instant HRS
  • Detectingmolecules from mid-infrared (MIR) to far-infrared (FIR) wavelength range
  • Improving result-delivery options from sub-part-per-million to percent levels
  • Analyzing up to 12 gasses simultaneously
  • Allowing remote sensing

Its Applications

A QCL analyzer’s impressive precision, range, and controllability have applications for different industries. These include:

Continuous emission monitoring systems (CEMS): It allows real-time continuous monitoring of gas emissions to provide a detailed measurement of molecules in the air for chemical processing andquality compliance.

Ethyl production:During the manufacturing process of ethylene, a QCL analyzer can help ensure a purer end-product by monitoring contaminants like carbon oxide (CO), carbon dioxide (CO2), and acetylene.

Chemical reduction: It helps control and reduce chemical by-products that result from manufacturing processes. Some of these pollutants are nitrogen-bases (NO, NO2, N2o, and NH2), ammonium chloride, and gaseous ammonia.

Natural gas quality analysis: It can ensure a pure natural gas harvest by detecting unwanted chemicals in the atmosphere.

Combustion control: Because QCL analyzers can be operated remotely, they can detect the combustive and non-combustive chemicals in the atmosphere under harsh environments.

A quantum cascade laser analyzer is a laser-based device that measures particles by emitting wavelengths. It’s different from other laser analyzers because it uses cascading electrons through quantum wells for transition rather than the energy gap, allowing for a more accurate and efficient operation. This makes it ideal for applications in CEMS and ethyl production, among others. To learn more about this, talk with a QCL manufacturer today.

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