Fiber Optic Chemical Sensors on Mars

by M. A. Butler, Sandia National Lab, Albuquerque, United States,
A. J. Ricco, Sandia National Lab, Albuquerque, United States,
F. J. Grunthaner, Sandia National Lab, Albuquerque, United States,
A. L. Lane, Sandia National Lab, Albuquerque, United States,



Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Engineering, Construction, and Operations in Space IV

Abstract:

A fiber optic chemical sensing instrument is described that will measure the reactivity of the martian soil and atmosphere. The self-contained instrument monitors reflectivity changes in reactive thin films caused by chemical reactions with the martian soil or atmosphere. Data from over 200 separate thin-film-coated optical fibers are recorded simultaneously. This fiber optic sensing technology has many advantages for planetary exploration and monitoring applications on manned spacecraft, in addition to many practical terrestrial uses.



Subject Headings: Fabrics | Chemicals | Probe instruments | Mars | Space exploration | Soil analysis | Solar radiation | Soil properties

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