An atmospheric pressure active nitrogen (APAN) discharge has been utilized for producing characteristic molecular emissions from nonmetallic species introduced into the afterglow region of the discharge. The addition of inorganic S-, P-, B-, Cl-, and Br-containing compounds into the afterglow has resulted in the formation of excited S2, PN, BO, NCl, and NBr species, respectively. Intense molecular Br2 emission and I2 emission, as well as atomic I emission, have also been observed. Preliminary analytical utilization of the molecular or atomic emissions observed revealed that the APAN afterglow may serve as a potentially useful detector for the aforementioned elements.
G. W. Rice, A. P. D'Silva, and V. A. Fassel, "Analytically Useful Spectra Excited in an Atmospheric Pressure Active Nitrogen Afterglow," Appl. Spectrosc. 38, 149-154 (1984)