This paper reports the development of a compact double-pulse laser system to enhance laser induced breakdown spectroscopy (LIBS) for field applications. Pumped by high-power vertical-surface emitting lasers, the laser system that produces 16 ns pulse at 12 mJ/pulse with total weight less than 10 kg is developed. The inter-pulse delay can be adjusted from 0μs with 0.5μs increment. Several LIBS experiments were carried out on NIST standard aluminum alloy samples. Comparing with the single-pulse LIBS, up to 9 times enhancement in atomic emission line was achieved with continuum background emission reduced by 70%. This has led to up to 10 times improvement in the limit of detection. Signal stability was also improved by 128% indicating that a more robust and accurate LIBS measurement can be achieved using a compact double-pulse laser system. This paper presents a viable and field deployable laser tool to dramatically improve the sensitivity and applicability of LIBS for a wide array of applications.
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