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Remote sensing spectra of cesium chloride provide a potential emergency management tool for response to a radiological dispersal device detonation

Mark P.S. Krekeler, BS, MS, PhD, C. Scott Allen, BA, MA, MS


Delineating affected areas from radiological dispersal device (RDD) events is a major challenge in emergency response. Remote sensing is one promising technique for detecting and discriminating dangerous from benign materials over large areas and from a safe distance. Remote sensing spectra of one major threat—cesium chloride (CsCl) powders—identifies previously unrecognized emissivity features at 2.96 μm (>30 percent), 6.01 μm (>20 percent), a broad feature at 7.10-7.49 μm (6-8 percent), and a triplet at 8.46 (6 percent), 8.89 (11-15 percent), and 9.33 μm (5-7 percent). While the features at 2.96, 6.01, and 7.10-7.49 μm are masked by atmospheric gases such as water vapor, the triplet at 8.46, 8.89, and 9.33 _m provides a unique spectral fingerprint that can be safely exploited from platforms at standoff distances.


radiological dispersal device(s), dirty bombs, remote sensing, hyperspectral, cesium chloride

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