During the last six months, the PHOTOFOOD partners have enlarged their collaborative activities, intensifying joint efforts on the development of the HI-FI and MI-FI prototypes. The UULM team travelled with both portable prototypes to nanoplus in Gerbrunn, Germany for a technical meeting. During this stay, together they improved the HI-FI prototype towards a compact, robust device with a higher signal and better portability. The interband cascade laser (ICL) developed by nanoplus was implemented in this setup and was ready for the first tests using exemplary analytes.
Moreover, the involved researchers had a detailed discussion on the further development of the MI-FI prototype, namely the fusion of the LED light source developed by nanoplus and other device components, such as a pyroelectric line array detector (PLAD) with a linear variable filter and an ATR crystal. This discussion resulted in an agreement to design a new reflector for the LED for better performance of the prototype, for which first prototypes have been already manufactured by nanoplus and tested in UULM.
The premiere validation of the optimized setup was performed during the Young Researchers meeting in Wageningen, Netherlands. Both prototypes proved to be easily transportable and were for the first time interlinked with the sample preparation and analysis developed by other partners.
A further collaboration focused on the integration of the new lasers produced in nanoplus was successfully completed in UULM, this time together with NMBU partners. The new ICL tuneable laser was integrated in the HI-FI prototype and tested, procuring effective results towards the availability of an emitting source at the most relevant bands for mycotoxin analysis. The cooperative discussions resulted in new ideas on the development of the HI-FI prototype and the future testing of the device using the analytes of interest to the PHOTONFOOD project.
The consortium will continue to mutually working towards creating prototypes suitable for field testing. Look forward to regular updates on LinkedIn or return to the news section of the PHOTONFOOD website.
By Antoni Femenias Llaneras and Polina Fomina, UULM