Laser Spectroscopy

The research activities of the Laser Spectroscopy group are focused on the development and application of high precision trace gas analyzers for environmental, industrial and medical applications. Relying on state of the art mid-infrared laser sources, e.g. continuous wave quantum cascade lasers (QCLAS), we cover the whole mid-infrared spectral range (3-10 µm) which gives us highest flexibility, sensitivity and specificity.

We close the gap between research grade and field deployable laser based instrumentation by combining high-performance with compactness, robustness, autonomy and modularity. This results in mobile sensors capable for in situ and continuous analysis of single or multiple molecular species under field conditions. High-precision gas measurements are the key to answer specific research questions and advance our knowledge in many important areas related to climate, environment, agriculture and medical diagnostics.

Our research projects include the measurement of trace gas fluxes for CO2, N2O, CH4 and NO2, the determination of isotope ratios of CO2, N2O and CH4 in ambient air, and breath air analysis for clinical research.

Visit the homepages of our two successful spin-off companies:


MIRO Analytical Technologies all-in-one multi-compound gas analyzer measures simultaneously up to 10 of the most important green-house gases and pollutants at atmospheric concentrations. MIRO leverages on multi-color quantum cascade lasers for unprecedented analytical precision and versatility.




IRsweep provides fast, broadband dual-comb spectrometers. Microsecond time resolution combined with large spectral bandwidth and high spectral resolution offers a plethora of new possibilities in molecular analysis, such as real-time observation of enzyme kinetics and chemical reactions.

Recent projects include:

  • The in-situ and continuous measurement of CO2 stable isotopes at the high altitude research station Jungfraujoch (3580 m elevation, Switzerland), to characterize local and regional emission sources.
  • Development and assessment of a high precision (~ppt level) and multi-component instrumentation for direct and simultaneous NO and NO2 measurements under field conditions.
  • High precision (< 0.1 ‰) analysis of N2O isotopomers.
  • Flux measurements of relevant greenhouse gases
  • IRSENS - the development of a gas sensing platform for environmental and industrial applications
  • Very fast propellant gas detection  for industrial leak surveillance
  • Characterization and validation of a gas sensor based on a supercontinuum laser source and MIR camera to be mounted on an UAV (drone) for air quality sensing in the European project FLAIR.
Dr. Lukas Emmenegger

Dr. Lukas Emmenegger
Head of Laboratory for Air Pollution / Environmental Technology

Phone: +41 58 765 4699

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