Ultrafast, Interface and Adsorbate Dynamics
This program measures the femtosecond and picosecond photochemistry and relaxation process of simple molecules to test our current understanding of theory and identify the effect of heterogeneous and interfacial environments on the spectra, photochemistry and energy relaxation of molecules at interfaces and on surfaces. Recent work has included ultrafast infrared studies of small anions in reverse micelles. Fabrication and characterization of nanorods has been pursued toward studies of adsorbates on nanostructure. In addition, optical studies, such as Raman spectroscopy, are employed to monitor surface molecular species on new fuel cell catalysts to understand poisoning effects.
Optical Studies of Solid Oxide Fuel Cells
Various optical methods are being applied to characterize materials and processes relevant to optimizing the performance of solid oxide fuel cells. Techniques being pursued include laser-induced fluorescence, laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy, infrared emission or reflection spectroscopy and thermal imaging. Current efforts have exploited the high temperatures used for SOFCs to permit thermal imaging with relatively inexpensive and practical silicon-based CCD cameras to monitor anode processes, such as carbon formation.
Optical and Spectroscopic Studies
Various types of optical measurements, spectroscopic studies and computational studies are pursued pertinent to efforts throughout the division. These include: remote sensing applications for tagging, tracking, and locating; development and application of chiral sensitive optical methods to study small peptide surface binding properties; femtosecond laser atmospheric propagation/laser filamentation experiments and modeling.
Multi-sensor Towed Array Detection System (MTADS)
Methods for efficient classification of buried metal objects are being developed. The MTADS has demonstrated the ability to detect all military unexploded ordnance (UXO) at their maximum penetration depths. The challenge is to reduce the number of scrap and fragment objects identified as UXO. Current work focuses on the shape-dependence of the Electromagnetic Induction response of buried targets for discrimination. Both time-domain and frequency-domain sensors are being investigated as well as a novel, hybrid sensor concept.
Spectral-based Component of the Volume Sensor Program
The objective of the Volume Sensor program is to develop an affordable, real-time detection system based on optical and acoustic methods for shipboard damage control. The Spectral-based (SB) component of the program develops and adapts optical detection methods outside the visible region of the spectrum to augment the video detection/machine vision being pursued in parallel. The two approaches being pursued are long wavelength video detection utilizing near infrared imaging and an array of single element detectors. In addition to laboratory tests, full scale testing is carried out on the ex-USS SHADWELL.