The goal is to demonstrate a cost effective, portable kit for forensic field analysis of e.g. blood stain age or illicit substances. The 4-year project is carried out with a joint effort from RISE, KTH and NFC (Swedish National Forensic Centre).
Aim and goal
The goal of this PhD project is to bridge science fiction and reality for crime scene investigation. The work focuses on sensing challenges defined by NFC utilizing nanophotonic design, fabrication and integration based on the joint and complementary competences and facilities of the partners.
Analysis of evidence traces requires instruments with high sensitivity and specificity. Today's instruments can in most cases only be used in a laboratory environment, due to both size and complexity of the analysis. First responders at a crime scene are thus not equipped to make other than very crude on-site sample analysis, which results in a high number of samples being sent to the lab for further analysis, only a small part of which may turn out to be of any value.
Nanophotonics has a great potential to lead to portable equipment that could streamline crime scene investigations. While the targeted sensors, e.g. for age analysis of blood stains, are not expected to render existing lab analysis obsolete, they will rather help to indicate which samples to send for further analysis as well as to give a first impression of the situation at hand.
The possibility to analyse traces directly at the crime scene is expected to result in a higher resource efficiency and quicker turnaround times, as well as provide information directly to the preliminary investigation and thereby benefit the entire criminal justice system by shortening the investigation times.