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Emissions Monitoring

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Petroleum extraction, production, distribution, and use all contribute to the accumulation of greenhouse and health-hazardous gases in the atmosphere.

Reducing the emission of these gases is a key concern of our time, but identifying their origins and quantifying their presence presents a number of challenges. These include efficient emissions mapping of large urban and rural areas, differentiation of natural and anthropogenic sources, and simply the ability to measure low concentrations of pollutants with accuracy and specificity. The Hanson Research Group has developed mobile, real-time sensors for monitoring key pollutant species (e.g., methane, ethane, propane, benzene, etc.) [1]. These sensors have been deployed on foot and in vehicles to map and identify sources of elevated emissions throughout California.

aerial view of the palo alto area and gas station locations
Elevated atmospheric benzene levels near gas stations on El Camino Real near Stanford University [1].

To learn more, check out some of our publications: 

[1] Sur, R., Ding, Y., Jackson, R. B., and Hanson, R. K., “Tunable laser-based detection of benzene using spectrally narrow absorption features,” Applied Physics B, vol. 125, Nov. 2019, p. 195.