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A team of Indian researchers have discovered a new method for TNT detection. The researchers synthesized two small fluorescent molecules (fluorophores) that are highly sensitive to ultra-low levels of TNT.
Normally, these fluorophores glow with a green-yellow color under UV light, but if they come in contact with even a tiny amount of TNT, no matter its physical form, the glow dims out. This low-cost solution trumps the conventional methods of detecting TNT by collecting a sample and testing it with expensive equipment. Not only are they inexpensive, but they are also metal free and allow detection at room temperature.