|[May 20, 2014]
Busting Rust with Light: New Technique Safely Penetrates Top Coat for Perfect Paint Job
WASHINGTON --(Business Wire)--
To keep your new car looking sleek and shiny for years, factories need
to make certain that the coats of paint on it are applied properly. But
ensuring that every coat of paint-whether it is on a car or anything
else-is of uniform thickness and quality is not easy.
Now researchers have developed a new way to measure the thickness of
paint layers and the size of particles embedded inside. Unlike
conventional methods, the paint remains undamaged, making the technique
useful for a variety of applications from cars to artifacts, cancer
detection and more. The researchers will describe their work at CLEO:
2014 being held June 8-13 in San Jose, California, USA.
"It's a problem that's quite challenging," said Anis Rahman, founder of Applied
Research and Photonics, Inc., in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. "None of
the current methods are very successful in determining the thickness of
individual layers and coatings in a nondestructive fashion."
The new technique, which was developed by Rahman and his son, Aunik,
uses terahertz reflectometry, in which a beam of terahertz-frequency
radiation is fired onto the paint. Terahertz radiation, which has
frequencies between infrared and microwave radiation, is nonionizing and
therefore harmless, Rahman said.
The terahertz beam penetrates the paint layers, which are each tens of
microns (millionths of a meter) thick and bounces back at different
intensities of light depending on the thickness of each layer of
material the bea encounters. Measuring the intensities of the reflected
beams reveals the thickness of each coat of paint down to a precision of
tens of nanometers, almost a million times narrower than the head of a
pin. This method can also be used to estimate the size of any particles
added to the paint as small as 25 nanometers.
In addition to quality control, the method would be useful for testing
paints as well, Rahman said. For example, in order for an overcoat on a
car to protect the paint underneath, the two layers have to remain
separate. Terahertz reflectometry can be used to make sure that the
overcoat does not penetrate the layers below. The method can also help
companies analyze how their paints react with different surfaces, such
as plastic, wood or metal.
Environmental health applications are also possible, Rahman said, since
the method can help detect whether old paint contains lead.
Archaeologists and art historians can even employ it to analyze the
paint on artifacts.
But terahertz reflectometry is useful for more than analyzing paint,
Rahman added. The researchers are now configuring their techniques to
analyze the structure of skin as a way to help diagnose early stages of
skin cancer such as melanoma and basal cell carcinoma. With the addition
of spectroscopy to measure the different wavelengths of reflected beams,
this technique can be used to analyze the structure of skin layers and
determine if they are healthy or diseased.
The instrument is ready for commercialization and Rahman says they are
currently looking for partners to help bring it to market.
Presentation AW3H.4, titled "Terahertz reflectometry of multi-layered
paint thicknesses and estimation of particle sizes," will take place
Wednesday, June 11, at 5:15 p.m. in Executive Ballroom 210H of the San
Jose Convention Center.
PRESS REGISTRATION: A press room for credentialed press and analysts
will be located in the San Jose Convention Center, Sunday through
Thursday, June 8-12. Those interested in obtaining a press badge for
CLEO: 2014 should contact Lyndsay Meyer at 202.416.1435 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
With a distinguished history as the industry's leading event on laser
science, the Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO) is the
premier international forum for scientific and technical optics, uniting
the fields of lasers and opto-electronics by bringing together all
aspects of laser technology, from basic research to industry
applications. CLEO: Expo showcases the latest products and applications
from more than 300 participating companies from around the world,
providing hands-on demonstrations of the latest market innovations and
applications. The Expo also offers valuable on-floor programming,
including Market Focus and the Technology Transfer program.
Sponsored by the American Physical Society's (APS) Laser Science
Division, IEEE (News - Alert) Photonics Society and The Optical Society (OSA), CLEO
provides the full range of critical developments in the field,
showcasing the most significant milestones from laboratory to
marketplace. With an unparalleled breadth and depth of coverage, CLEO
connects all of the critical vertical markets in lasers and
electro-optics. For more information, visit�www.cleoconference.org.
CLEO: 2014 takes place June 8 - 13 at the San Jose Convention Center.
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