Well characterized test materials are essential for validating the performance of current trace explosive detection systems. These test materials must replicate trace explosive contamination in the form of small particles with characteristic diameters in the micrometer range. In this work, Precision Particle Fabrication was used to fabricate monodisperse polymer microspheres that contain high explosives. Three high explosives were successfully incorporated into the microspheres. Ion mobility spectrometry confirmed that the encapsulation efficiency was typically greater than 50% with some loss to the aqueous phase during production. We demonstrate that, with this technique, polymer microspheres containing explosives can be produced with sufficient encapsulation, along with tightly controlled particle size distributions at high production rates. These microspheres have proven to be a valuable test material for trace explosive detectors because of their highly precise size, shape, and explosive composition.
Citation: Journal of Microencapsulation
Pub Type: JournalsReport Number:
explosives, ion mobility spectrometry, microspheres, standards, trace detection