Theodore Corcovilos, an associate professor of physics at Duquesne University, will discuss using light to measure water quality:

We have developed a low-cost homemade handheld instrument for optically based testing of water quality based on multiband optical absorption and fluorescence measurements. Our key innovation is how we process the spectral data of our samples and use this to extract concentration values. Using off-the-shelf chemical reagents, we are able to measure concentrations of lead, iron, and fluoride in drinking water with greater sensitivity and precision than comparable portable commercial devices.

Corcovilos completed a bachelor’s degree at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, in 1999, and a Ph.D. in physics at the California Institute of Technology (Pasadena) in 2008.  He worked as a postdoctoral researcher at Rice University (Houston) and the Pennsylvania State University (University Park) before joining the faculty of Duquesne University (Pittsburgh) in 2013, where he is currently an associate professor in the Department of Physics. Corcovilos’s research in is the fields of theoretical and applied Optics. Corcovilos’s current research projects include optical assays of contaminants in drinking water, infrared multi-photon dissociation (IRMPD) spectroscopy of molecular ions in ion-trap mass spectrometers, fluorescent quantification of cross-linked biomolecules, and applications of projective geometry to optics and classical mechanics.

Join us on Friday, February 3, from 12 - 1 p.m. in Hayes 211/213 to hear this exciting presentation. Lunch will be available in Hayes 216 from 11:45 to 12. We hope to see you there!