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Spectral Gas Analysis and Reference Data

Working Group 3.42


The working group is addressing the metrology and the application of molecular spectroscopy used to analyze gases and gas mixtures. Based on laser and Fourier-transform spectroscopy specific methods can be implementd to determine the amount-of-substance fraction (concentration) of a species under test in a given gas mixtures directly from the measured absorption of light. These methods rely on the knowledge of spectral line parameters describing the spectroscopic interaction quantitatively and specifically for the probed molecular transition.

Line parameters are key to many spectroscopic applications in atmospheric and environmental sciences as well as in industrial process control. The working group is therefore also devoted to the measurement and dissimation of spectral line parameters.

To summarize, the working group is devoted to the combination of gas metrology and molecular spectroscopy addressing the following R&D aspects:

  • Applying IR spectroscopic techniques to quantify molecular species in gas mixtures
  • Determining and disseminating spectral line parameters
  • IR spectroscopy as a potential primary method in gas analysis
  • Progressing spectroscopic measurement methods and sensors for metrology, atmospheric sciences and industry



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  • We are doing research on

    • Development of a hygrometer to be used in airplanes for investigation of the
      atmosphere  (EUFAR)

    • In-situ residual gas quantification with tunable diode laser absorption spectroscopy (FVV)
    • Improving understanding of ice nucleation and growth inhibition mechanisms via new isotopic tracer studies in the AIDA aerosol chamber (DFG NSF)
    • Spectroscopic analysis of high pressure and  high temperature processes Opens external link in new window(Publication)

  • Completed projects within the scope of the European Metrology Research Programme (EMRP)
    • EUMETRISPEC —› PTB internal continuation of the EMRP-Project (EUMETRISPEC)
    • Metrology for airborne molecular contamination in manufacturing environments (MetAMC)
    • Metrology for ammonia in ambient air (MetNH3)
    • Metrology for high-impact greenhouse gases (HIGHGAS)
    • Metrology for biogas (BIOGAS)
    • Metrology to underpin future regulation of industrial emissions (IMPRESS)


  • Projects within the scope of the European Metrology Programme for Innovation and Research Opens external link in new windowEMPIR

    • Metrology for humidity at high temperature and transient conditions Opens external link in new windowHIT
    • Metrology for Biogas 2 Opens external link in new windowBiomethane
    • Metrology for nitrogen dioxide Opens external link in new windowMetNO2
    • Metrology for stable isotope reference standards Opens external link in new windowSIRS
    • Metrology for air pollutant emissions Opens external link in new windowIMPRESS2
    • Metrology for Airborne Molecular Contaminations 2 Opens external link in new windowMetAMC2

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