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'Biochemical Nose' Targeted for Home Sensing Market

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A "biochemical nose" based on Raman spectroscopy can quickly and accurately detect or diagnose substances at the molecular level for applications in food safety, medical diagnosis, chemical analysis and even home safety.

"Our system can do chemistry, biology, biochemistry, molecular biology, clinical diagnosis and chemical analysis," said Fanqing Frank Chen, president and cofounder of Optokey Inc., a Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory spinoff that developed the technology.

The device uses a microfluidic control system for lab-on-a-chip automated liquid sampling. Nanoplasmonic resonators measure the interaction of photons with an activated surface using nanostructures to enable chemical and biological sensing.

"We're able to mass produce this nanoplasmonic resonator on a wafer scale," Chen said. "We took something from the R&D realm and turned it into something industrial strength."

Optokey plans to target the smart-home market, where the sensors could be built into houses to scan for pollutants in the air and water.

For more information, visit

Oct 2015
raman spectroscopy
That branch of spectroscopy concerned with Raman spectra and used to provide a means of studying pure rotational, pure vibrational and rotation-vibration energy changes in the ground level of molecules. Raman spectroscopy is dependent on the collision of incident light quanta with the molecule, inducing the molecule to undergo the change.
BusinessAmericasOptokeyBerkeley LabFanqing Frank ChenSensors & DetectorsBiophotonicsspectroscopyRaman spectroscopyRapidScan

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