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Development of an AccuTOF-DART™ Database of Potential Toxins, Drugs and Other Substances for Use by Forensic Laboratories

FWP/Project Description: 

This project has three phases.  The first will seek to determine the needs for the database and what data already exist.  The second will work to build the database and begin to populate the database.  The third will seek to test the database in a larger population of DART-TOF users and to disseminate the database to these users.  As DART-TOF is a very new technology, the field is very dynamic, necessitating that all involved with the project be flexible and consider other as yet unknown applications and needs.

FUNDING SOURCE:

Research Triangle Institute

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

John McClelland

E-mail: mcclelland@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-7948

Environmentally Benign Repair of Composites Using High Temperature Cyanate Ester Nanocomposites

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

The objective of this project is to design and evaluate a new class of environmentally benign, low viscosity resins reinforced with nanosize alumina particles.  The use temperature for these resins will be high because of Polymer’s high Tg.  These repair resins will be rheologically engineered for optimum crack filling and stability for repairmen to withstand high loadings, environmental extremes, and service temperatures.

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

Strategic Environmental Research and Development Program (SERDP)

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Mike Kessler

E-mail: mkessler@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-3101

Forensic Science Testing and Evaluation Laboratory

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

This project is a collaborative effort between the National Forensic Science Technology Center; the National Center for Forensic Science; the National Clearinghouse for Science, Technology, and the Law; Marshall University’s Forensic Science Center; and the Midwest Forensics Resource Center.  The purpose of the project is to facilitate the adoption of new tools and technologies into practice by criminal justice agencies through testing, evaluation, and provision of technology assistance.

 

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Forensic Science Technology Center

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

David P. Baldwin

E-mail: dbaldwin@ameslab.gov

Phone: (515) 294-2069

Improvements in Laser Ablation-Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry for Quantitative Forensic Analysis

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

Laser ablation inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (LA-ICP-MS) is a non-destructive method for trace elemental analysis of solids.  Trace element composition can be useful in forensic applications for matching or attribution studies, in which a material recovered from a crime scene is compared to one from a suspect.  This project will utilize the latest development in LA technology:  a new short pulse (~100 fs) ultraviolet (266 nm) laser.  Such a laser is believed to provide particulates from the sample that are closer to its real elemental composition and that are much better atomized and ionized when they're introduced into the ICP.  The result is more accurate elemental identification and better quantification with less need for closely matched solid standards materials.  When combined with a magnetic sector ICP-MS instrument, the result is very high sensitivity (e.g., sub-ppb levels can be measured) and selectivity for trace elements.  These improved analytical capabilities should extend the scope of application of trace element evidence to different materials (e.g., glass panes, metals, plastics, tapes) of forensic interest.  Short validation studies to investigate the potential forensic value of such elemental information will be done on selected materials of potential interest.

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Institute of Justice

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Sam Houk

E-mail: rshouk@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-9462

Manipulative Virtual Tools for Tool Mark Characterization

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

The goal of this project is to develop a methodology whereby a three-dimensional (3-D) computer simulation of a tool tip is generated.  Quantitative 3-D data from the suspected tool and evidence toolmark will be acquired and a virtual reality program developed that takes this data and reconstructs a “virtual tool” for computer manipulation to create “virtual tool marks.” Duplicate marks based on these results can then be statistically compared and ranked on the basis of quantitative measurements.  If successful, the project should increase the accuracy and validity of toolmark identification by providing quantitative, scientifically testable and verifiable data.

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Institute of Justice

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Song Zhang

E-mail: song@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-0723

 

Scott Chumbley

E-mail: chumbley@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-7903

MicroCantilever (MC) based Robust Sensing Approach for Controlled Substances

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

MicroCantilever (MC) based sensors can provide revolutionary sensitivity for forensic detection and identification of controlled substance, toxic species, biological molecules, and DNA matching.  Current sensor systems require extensive sample preparation and/or specialized instrumentation to identify molecules of controlled substances such as cocaine with high specificity and sensitivity.  This project aims to overcome these limitations by developing a novel sensing approach based on MC sensors coupled with aptamer-based receptor layers.  In order to demonstrate the feasibility and forensic suitability of this approach, sensors for sensitive and specific identification of cocaine, cocaine metabolites, and methamphetamine molecules will be developed.

 

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Institute of Justice

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

Marit Nilsen-Hamilton

E-mail: marit@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-9996

 

Pranav Shrotriya

E-mail: shrotriy@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-9719

 

George Kraus

E-mail: gakraus@iastate.edu

Phone: (515) 294-7794

Midwest Forensics Resource Center

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

This project is a collaborative effort between the National Forensic Science Technology Center; the National Center for Forensic Science; the National Clearinghouse for Science, Technology, and the Law; Marshall University’s Forensic Science Center; and the Midwest Forensics Resource Center.  The purpose of the project is to facilitate the adoption of new tools and technologies into practice by criminal justice agencies through testing, evaluation, and provision of technology assistance.

 

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Forensic Science Technology Center

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

David P. Baldwin

E-mail: dbaldwin@ameslab.gov

Phone: (515) 294-2069

Forensic Technology Center of Excellence

FWP/Project Description: 

DESCRIPTION:

This project is a collaborative effort between the National Forensic Science Technology Center; the National Center for Forensic Science; the National Clearinghouse for Science, Technology, and the Law; Marshall University’s Forensic Science Center; and the Midwest Forensics Resource Center.  The purpose of the project is to facilitate the adoption of new tools and technologies into practice by criminal justice agencies through testing, evaluation, and provision of technology assistance.

 

 

FUNDING SOURCE:

National Forensic Science Technology Center

 

FOR MORE INFORMATION:

David P. Baldwin

E-mail: dbaldwin@ameslab.gov

Phone: (515) 294-2069

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