One of the biggest challenges for first responders, law enforcement, and customs and borders personnel across the globe is the need to quickly and safely identify narcotics, chemicals or hazardous materials (hazmat) at the scene, in order to take immediate action. It is critical to do this with high accuracy, and for decision-makers to have the right tools in place to keep themselves and their communities safe from potential threats. Often, illicit substances can be wrapped in coloured packaging that fluoresces and blocks identification by standard analysers, the majority of which operate at a wavelength of 785nm. This makes it much more difficult to tease out definitive results from the heightened background fluorescence, so users in the field may need to take a sample out of the packaging for analysis, which could expose them to potentially harmful substances.
The Thermo Scientific™ 1064Defender™ Raman Analyzer was introduced to the market in March 2021 in order to address this challenge, offering the ability to scan at a wavelength of 1064nm. This overcomes the fluorescence generated by coloured packaging, enabling users to identify substances safely and quickly through the container or packaging. The analyser is designed specifically for field-based presumptive testing, and achieves highly accurate results using an innovative p-value detection algorithm, setting this device apart from other instruments used for chemical identification.
The updated 1064Defender Raman Analyzer has a greatly expanded library of narcotics substances – and now includes a unique hazmat library for firefighters, hazmat teams and others interested in the identification of these materials – taking the number of substance profiles recognised by the device to approximately 13,000. As a result, this powerful analyser makes onsite testing safer and faster, allowing for the identification of a wide range of new and emerging threats with increased confidence.