Guest Column | July 24, 2008

NIR Trends: The Growing Impact Of Light

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Article: NIR Trends: The Growing Impact Of Light

By Douglas Malchow, Business Development Manager for Industrial Products, Sensors Unlimited, Inc., part of Goodrich Corporation

The interaction between an electromagnetic wave and a material can tell us a great deal about the chemistry and physical makeup of the material in question. We are all familiar with this interaction — for example, visible light in electromagnetic wavelengths reflects off plant leaves and enters our eye as green light, due to absorption of other wavelengths by the dominant photosynthesis chemical, chlorophyll. Many of us coat our bodies with sunscreen to absorb ultraviolet (UV) wavelengths of light to protect our skin from damage by these higher energy wavelengths. We are also aware that when X-rays, with wavelengths even shorter than UV light, are sent through our body, they are mostly absorbed by bone (and not as much by tissue), enabling medical professionals to diagnose broken bones or decayed teeth.

Fewer people, however, are aware that wavelengths in the infrared (IR) bands are also being used for product quality control and the detection of health problems.

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Article: NIR Trends: The Growing Impact Of Light

Sensors Unlimited - UTC Aerospace Systems