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Title: Monitoring of optically active chemicals using chromatic modulation techniques
Author: Egan, Christopher Alexander
ISNI:       0000 0001 3441 7320
Awarding Body: University of Liverpool
Current Institution: University of Liverpool
Date of Award: 2006
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This thesis presents a design and evaluation of a hybrid polarimeter system. A polarimeter typically uses monochromatic light to measure the concentration of an optically active chemical. The system presented here — the chromatic polarimeter — makes use of a polychromatic light source but otherwise the basic polarimetry system remains similar (and thus uncomplicated and low cost). The use of a polychromatic light source means that due to the wavelength dependence of the optical activity the resultant signal will be complex. The key difference of the system is that the results are interpreted using chromatic methodology, which enables complex optical signals to be reduced to three chromatic parameters. Discussed in this thesis are the results of work that examined a fusion of two techniques, that of chromatic modulation and monitoring and a modified form of polarimetry. Results have shown that it is possible to resolve the concentration of an optically active chemical via chromatic processing (sucrose). Work involving a chemical that had both varying concentration and molecular weight showed some promise and suggested the possibility that, with more work, both these variables could be resolved using the three chromatic parameters hue, lightness and saturation. The mixing of two optically active chemicals at different concentrations was performed. Analysis during the course of the project and subsequently (reported in appendix E) shows that is possible to resolve two optically active chemicals via chromatic maps. Finally the measurement of a chemical reaction that changes its optical activity with time was investigated briefly. This investigation showed very promising results that suggest the ability to track a chemical reaction of this nature is very feasible. A method for performing this tracking via curve fitting is outlined. The thesis concludes with an overview of the aims and how they were met and suggest further avenues of work that would improve the system presented here.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral