Browse Publications Technical Papers 2004-01-2559
2004-07-19

Optical Sensors for Food Pathogen and Hazardous Chemical Agent Detection for ISS and Planetary Outpost 2004-01-2559

Routine identification of pathogenic microorganisms predominantly based on nutritional and biochemical tests is a time-consuming process; the delay may lead to fatal consequences at times on Earth and in space exploration. Optical biosensors provide an attractive alternative to rapid detection of microorganisms in complicated food or other biological materials at the International Space Station and planetary outposts. In this work two types of optical biosensors Fourier transform Infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy and Surface Plasmon Resonance (SPR) biosensor were used for microorganism detection and identification. FTIR spectroscopy combined with chemometric analysis was successfully applied to detect the presence/absence of microorganisms in two microbial cocktails made from four and five pathogenic microorganisms in apple juice with 100% accuracy. FTIR spectroscopy combined with Artificial Neural Networks (ANNs) was also investigated as a potential method to identify and quantify microorganisms in apple juice. SPR biosensor was used to detect E. coli with possible extension to near real time analysis.

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