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NIR Spectroscopy

Measurements in the electromagnetic spectrum between 700 and 2500 nm are considered near-infrared spectroscopy, but this method most often refers to measurements of NIR reflectance and absorbance. Light in the near-infrared range is able to penetrate further into many materials than other wavelengths, making this technique especially valuable in biomedical applications.

The spectral bands revealed in NIR spectroscopy are typically broad and complex, making it difficult to distinguish the effects of individual elements. Use of multivariate analysis and the development of reference calibration data are essential in NIR spectroscopy.

Measurements in the near-infrared between 900 and 2500 nm require special considerations and the Avantes NIRLine is the answer. The NIRLine offers both cooled and uncooled instruments with user selectable dual gain mode for the choice to emphasize High-Sensitivity or Low Noise operations.

The cooled instruments in the NIRLine feature thermoelectric Peltier-cooled InGaAs detectors capable of cooling the detector to -25°C compared to ambient enhancing the signal to noise ratio and allowing for longer integration times.

The NIRLine is fully compatible with other instruments in the Avantes family with several premium options to consider including Irradiance/Intensity calibration or nonlinearity calibration.

Biomedical Applications for NIR Spectroscopy

There are several wavelengths of particular value to the Biomedical community, particularly the range from roughly 650 to 1350 nm called the Near-infrared diagnostic window. This range of wavelengths penetrates more deeply into living tissue than any other wavelength and without any damage or danger to the subject. Because of this characteristic, NIR measurements are widely used in biomedical applications. Co-oximetry and blood gas analysis provide important information to medical personnel about the oxygenation levels of the blood by measuring hemoglobin that is bonded to an oxygen molecule against those that are not. Other important biomedical parameters in NIR spectroscopy are water and fat, both sources of attenuation. Furthermore different parts of the body have different concentrations of water, hemoglobin, melanin and other constituents requiring the development of multi-reference data. For example, the absorption spectrum for arteries and veins are different, therefore the development of reference calibration for breast tissue requires plotting an average distribution of veins and arteries in the sample.

Other Applications for NIR Spectroscopy

Besides biomedical applications, near-infrared spectroscopy is employed in dozens of everyday uses. In agriculture, NIR spectroscopy is used to estimate the chlorophyll content which has a direct correlation to nitrogen in the soil. This allows farmers to use less nitrogen-based fertilizer and only where and when it is needed, saving production costs and protecting the environment. NIR spectroscopy is also used to monitor plant health, particularly grain crops, for diseases that cut yield or produce harmful toxins. You can also find NIR spectroscopy in the grading and sorting of fruits and vegetables. NIR spectroscopy is also hard at work in astronomy, remote sensing and materials science.

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NIR Spectrometers from 800 to 1160 nm

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AvaSpec-ULS2048XL-EVO

The AvaSpec-ULS2048XL EVO spectrometer combines exceptional quantum efficiency with high-speed. Unlike many back-thinned CCD spectrometers, which have two-dimensional arrays, the ULS2048XL-EVO has large monolithic pixels of 14x500 microns with exceptional efficiency in the UV, from 200-400 nm, and the NIR, from 950-1160 nm. For enhanced sensitivity, a detector collection lens is available which improves sensitivity up to 60% when combined with larger core fibers.

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AvaSpec-ULS2048X16

The AvaSpec-ULS2048X16 back-thinned Hamamatsu detector features a signal to noise ratio of 500:1 and quantum efficiency of up to 78%. Options include order-sorting filter to reduce 2nd order effects, purge ports for deep-UV measurements, and a wide range of slit sizes, and gratings. It may be configured with SMA or FC/PC fiber-optic entrance connectors.

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AvaSpec-ULS2048X64

The AvaSpec-ULS2048x64 features extra-large pixels, perfect for low-light conditions, especially when combined with large diameter fibers. Options include order-sorting filter to reduce 2nd order effects, purge ports for deep-UV measurements. The AvaSpec-ULS2048x64 comes with a wide range of slit sizes and gratings and may be configured with SMA or FC/PC fiber-optic entrance connectors.

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NIRLine Spectrometers from 900-2500 nm

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Instruments up to 1700nm (Uncooled)

Avantes offers the AvaSpec-NIR256-1.7-EVO and AvaSpec-NIR512-1.7-EVO for measurements in the near infrared range out to 1.7 µm. The AvaSpec-NIR256/512-1.7-EVO spectro-meters pair the same trusted InGaAs array detectors with our ultra low-noise electronics board featuring USB3 and Giga-Ethernet connection port. These affordable uncooled instruments are USB powered and are available with a choice of four gratings and replaceable slit options.

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Instruments up to 1700nm (Cooled)

The AvaSpec-NIR256-1.7-HSC-EVO and AvaSpec-NIR512-1.7-HSC-EVO offer the high sensitivity100mm optical bench (HSC) with the next generation of electronics. Both instruments deliver exceptional performance specifications such as a high sample speed and integration times as fast as 20 μs. Both spectrometers pair the same trusted InGaAs array detectors with our ultra low-noise electronics board featuring USB3 and Giga-Ethernet connection port.

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NIR Spectrometers up to 2500 nm
(TEC Cooled)

The AvaSpec-NIR256-2.5-HSC-EVO and AvaSpec-NIR512-2.5-HSC-EVO are based on a 100mm optical bench with an NA of 0.13 offering optimal balance between resolution and sensitivity.
The 2.5-HSC-EVO series feature 256 or 512 pixel InGaAs detectors and are available in multiple configurations. These instruments are perfect for grain, corn, wheat, soya, polymers but also for medical uses, process monitoring and other analysis.

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NIR Spectroscopy Resources

Near Infrared Spectroscopy Information Page

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Spectroscopy in the Agricultural Industry

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Seeking the Key to Non-Invasive Diabetes Diagnosis and Monitoring

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Spectra of the Month Feature: NIR Spectra In-Vivo

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Discover More Recent Applications in Spectroscopy

Posted on: November 21st, 2019

Spectra: NIR Grain Analysis

Conducted by: David Ademe, Avantes Inc. Theme: Grains/Agriculture Background/Applications: Absorption and reflection measurements can be used to determine the freshness…

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Posted on: November 21st, 2019

Spectroscopy in Sustainable Soil Management

Agricultural research of today goes into feeding the world’s population tomorrow. Year after year, farmers try to produce more food…

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Posted on: October 25th, 2019

Spectra Feature: Buckets of Blood!

This month's spectra celebrates the Halloween season as we measure spectra results obtained from BLOOD! Background/Applications: Absorption spectroscopy is used…

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