Department of Chemistry and Chemical Biology
Forensic and Investigative Sciences Program
Evaluation of the Odor Compounds Sensed by Explosive-Detecting Canines
My group is investigating the amount and composition of vapor generated by explosive formulations. This work is being conducted in collaboration with the Departments of Defense and Justice, and it represents the application of forensic analytical chemistry to canine training and testing. The results we have generated on the amount of explosive vapor that escapes from a container are directly applicable to the set-up and procedures that will be used to train and test canines in the field. Furthermore, the identification of chemical compounds that are present in explosive vapor will illustrate how canines may be able to detect explosives, even when the explosive compound is non-volatile. Our lab results have been and will continue to be verified in live testing using certified explosive-detecting canines.