Probing methane in air with a midinfrared frequency comb source

Feng Zhu, Jinbao Xia, Aysenur Bicer, James Bounds, Alexandre Kolomenskii, James Strohaber, Lewis Johnson, Mahmood Amani, Hans Schuessler

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3 Citations (Scopus)


We employed a midinfrared frequency comb source for methane detection in ambient air. The transmitted spectra over a bandwidth of about 500 nm were recorded with an optical spectrum analyzer under various experimental conditions of different path lengths. The normalized absorption spectra were compared and fitted with simulations, yielding quantitative values of concentrations of methane and water vapor in the ambient air. The 3σ detection limit was ∼6.6 × 10−7 cm−1 in ambient air for a broad spectral range, achieved with a path length of ∼590 m. This approach provides a broad spectral range, a large dynamic range, high sensitivity, and accurate calibration. The performed analysis of the residuals shows that an excellent agreement between the measured and calculated spectral profiles was obtained.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)6311-6316
Number of pages6
JournalApplied Optics
Issue number22
Publication statusPublished - 1 Aug 2017


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

Cite this

Zhu, F., Xia, J., Bicer, A., Bounds, J., Kolomenskii, A., Strohaber, J., Johnson, L., Amani, M., & Schuessler, H. (2017). Probing methane in air with a midinfrared frequency comb source. Applied Optics, 56(22), 6311-6316.