Autonomous multi-species environmental gas sensing using drone-based Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy

Marius Rutkauskas, Martin Asenov, Subramanian Ramamoorthy, Derryck T. Reid

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract / Description of output

Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs)x2014;or dronesx2014;present compelling new opportunities for airborne gas sensing in applications such as environmental monitoring, hazardous scene assessment, and facilitiesx2019; inspection. Instrumenting a UAV for this purpose encounters trade-offs between sensor size, weight, power, and performance, which drives the adoption of lightweight electrochemical and photo-ionisation detectors. However, this occurs at the expense of speed, selectivity, sensitivity, accuracy, resolution, and traceability. Here, we report on the design and integration of a broadband Fourier-transform infrared spectrometer with an autonomous UAV, providing ro-vibrational spectroscopy throughout the molecular fingerprint region from 3 x2013; 11 x00B5;m (3333 x2013; 909 cmx2212;1) and enabling rapid, quantitative aerial surveys of multiple species simultaneously with an estimated noise-limited performance of 18 ppm (propane). Bayesian interpolation of the acquired gas concentrations is shown to provide both localization of a point source with approximately one meter accuracy, and distribution mapping of a gas cloud, with accompanying uncertainty quantification.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9578-9587
Number of pages10
JournalOptics Express
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2019

Keywords / Materials (for Non-textual outputs)

  • Absorption spectroscopy
  • Distributed feedback lasers
  • Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy
  • Infrared sensors
  • Infrared spectroscopy
  • Sensor performance


Dive into the research topics of 'Autonomous multi-species environmental gas sensing using drone-based Fourier-transform infrared spectroscopy'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this