Laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy expands into industrial applications
This paper presents R&D activities in the field of laser-induced breakdown spectroscopy for industrial applications and shows novel LIBS systems running in routine operation for inline process control tasks. Starting with a comparison of the typical characteristics of LIBS with XRF and spark-discharge optical emission spectrometry, the principal structure of LIBS machines embedded for inline process monitoring will be presented. A systematic requirement analysis for LIBS systems following Ishikawa's scheme was worked out. Stability issues are studied for laser sources and Paschen-Runge spectrometers as key components for industrial LIBS systems. Examples of industrial applications range from handheld LIBS systems using a fiber laser source, via a set of LIBS machines for inline process control tasks, such as scrap analysis, coal analysis, liquid slag analysis and finally monitoring of drill dust.