The Public Lab spectrometry project is an open source community effort to develop low-cost spectrometers for a range of purposes. All open spectrometry hardware and software efforts are welcome here! **Join in by:** * Learning [what spectrometry is](#Whats+spectrometry) * Reading about goals and [asking great questions](#Frequently+Asked+Questions) * Building a basic spectrometer using [one of our starter kits](#Starter+Kits) * Trying (and critiquing) our [community-made how-to guides](#Activities) and posting your own * Building on others’ work; hack and remix the kits to refine and expand them * [Share your upgrades](#Upgrades) for others to try -- and perhaps for inclusion in an upcoming starter kit release or add-on kit **** ## Starter Kits Public Lab’s Kits initiative offers several starter kits, including many of the basic components, and instructions for constructing a basic visible light spectrometer. The point of the kits is to provide a shared reference design for building experimental setups onto. Lego Spectrometer Kit Our most recent kit, incorporating community improvements while balancing low cost and ease of construction. Choose between webcam and Raspberry Pi camera versions and build attachments width standard Lego connectors. Build one Buy one Papercraft Spectrometry Intro Kit A $9 paper spectrometer which you can attach to a smartphone or webcam. It’s made of paper to reduce cost and complexity, and is mainly intended as an “introductory” or educational kit. The flat design can be printed on a laser printer or photocopied to make more. Build one Buy one **** ## Activities This is a list of community-generated guides for specific applications using your spectrometry setup (either a [starter kit](#Starter+Kits) or a [modded design](#Upgrades)). These [activities can be categorized](https://publiclab.org/wiki/activity-categories), and some may be more reproduced -- or reproducible -- than others. Try them out to build your skills, and help improve them by leaving comments. Together, we can repeat and refine the activities into experiments. > **Note:** If you are working on an **urgent issue** such as a threat to your or someone else’s health, please know that these techniques may not be ready for your use; it's possible that they never will be. [Read more here](/notes/gretchengehrke/09-29-2016/common-low-cost-technique-limitations) ### Activity grid [activities:spectrometry] **** ## Upgrades Have you added to your starter kit, improved it, or redesigned it? Show others how to take it to the next level by posting a build guide here: [upgrades:spectrometry] Add your upgrade guide here Request or propose an upgrade _Mods should include a parts list and a step-by-step construction guide with photo documentation. See an example._ **** ## Challenges We're working to refine and improve DIY spectrometry on a number of fronts; here, take a look at the leading challenges we're hoping to solve, and post your own. For now, we're using the Q&A feature, so just click "Ask a question" to post your own challenge. Be sure to add: * constraints: expense, complexity * goals: performance, use cases [questions:spectrometry-challenge] **** ## Builds There’s a lot going on in open source spectrometry -- if you’ve developed another open source design you’d like to show others how to construct, post it here! * [RamanPi](https://hackaday.io/project/1279-ramanpi-raman-spectrometer) * [Hackteria “drop”-style spectrometers](https://publiclab.org/notes/gaudi/04-03-2014/diy-micro-volume-spectrophotometer) / [DIY NanoDrop on Hackteria.org](http://hackteria.org/wiki/index.php/DIY_NanoDrop) * _Add yours here_ ##What's spectrometry? Colored light is often a blend of different colors. A spectrometer is a device which splits those colors apart, like a prism, and measures the strength of each color. A typical output of a spectrometer looks like this spectrum of the daytime sky, with the actual light spectrum at the top and the graph of wavelength (horizontal axis, in nanometers of wavelength) and intensity (vertical axis) below: [![sky.png](https://i.publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/005/455/original/sky.png)](https://spectralworkbench.org/analyze/spectrum/19882) > Needed: overview of spectra, calibration, units, comparison, and fluorescence/absorption. Please edit this page or link to a resource, potentially [the Wikipedia page](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Spectroscopy), although that's quite full of technical jargon. ## Software Spectral data can be analyzed with https://spectralworkbench.org to create spectra plots, find centers of emissions plots, and find similar spectra. Data also can be exported in various formats (JSON, CSV, XML) for further analysis and visualization. ## How does this compare to a lab instrument? The [Desktop Spectrometry Starter Kit](/wiki/desktop-spectrometry-kit-3-0) is only one part in an experimental setup, and the following shows where it fits in an overall diagram of a lab spectrometric setup: [![tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_101601_2-79757779.jpg](https://publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/018/635/large/tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_101601_2-79757779.jpg)](https://publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/018/635/original/tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_101601_2-79757779.jpg) [![tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_095939_2-108076392.jpg](https://publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/018/636/large/tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_095939_2-108076392.jpg)](https://publiclab.org/system/images/photos/000/018/636/original/tmp_31873-IMG_20161027_095939_2-108076392.jpg) There are many, many different types of spectrometry and spectrometers -- many don’t even measure light. Even among those that do, some detect light in the ultraviolet range, and others in the infrared range of light. The range of Public Lab spectrometers depends on the range of the commercially available cameras we attach them to (~400-700 nanometer wavelengths). A commercially available product with a slightly wider range (from 335 to 1000 nanometers) is [available from Cole Parmer](http://www.coleparmer.com/Product/Cole_Parmer_Visible_spectrophotometer_335_to_1000_nm_wavelength_range_analog_output/UX-83055-10). **** ## Frequently Asked Questions [questions:spectrometry] Note our previous Frequently Asked Questions page, which [can be found here »](/wiki/spectrometer-faq) -- please help port these into the new system, here!...

Author Comment Last activity Moderation
Ag8n "The tungsten lamp remarks only apply to the 660 nm red lines. " | Read more » 4 days ago
Ag8n "Best bet- use an old fashioned tungsten lamp. Not a LED claiming to be a tungsten lamp. An LED has a narrow bandwidth. An old fashioned tungsten..." | Read more » 4 days ago
Ag8n "Looking into the 660 nm lines. It's not that LEDs don't exist for 425 nm region. They do. But the ones in the catalogs seemed expensive. Going ..." | Read more » 5 days ago
Ag8n "There are 3 in 1 flashlights ( blue, white, and red) that would be good for this application- as long as the color was more like purple instead of ..." | Read more » 9 days ago
Ag8n "If you are using the public lab spectrometer, a light source for around 400 nm is needed. It looks like there are some blue or violet led bulbs/ f..." | Read more » 10 days ago
Ag8n "A test of this method might be to use lawn clippings and run it through the procedure. The idea is to extract chlorophyll, which should be presen..." | Read more » 10 days ago
Ag8n "Another, more current option , is to use a coffee grinder. With the temperature issues this material shows, probably using the frozen state would ..." | Read more » 10 days ago
Ag8n "As for the mortar and pestle, there are many options. Some mortar and pestles are very expensive, but they don't have to be. They should be easy t..." | Read more » 11 days ago
Ag8n "Was checking one of the online vendors. Found new centrifuges for $70. Industrial quality centrifuge costs were much higher, but who knows. If y..." | Read more » 12 days ago
Ag8n "Ok. Trying to stay as close to duplicate the original paper as closely as possible. R.la cera isn't in this area. But other closely related liche..." | Read more » 12 days ago
Ag8n "One word of warning. Solvents ( like acetone) and plastic cuvettes do not usually go together. The worst case is the plastic melts, but the plast..." | Read more » 16 days ago
Ag8n "Still have to do more work. But the acetone extract seems like something that might be doable in a home lab type situation. The acetone extract i..." | Read more » 17 days ago
fongvania "There's some work needed to modify this research protocol so it can be done in regions like Ohio that might not have the exact species listed in th..." | Read more » 18 days ago
fongvania "I don't know of a community science project using the pigment extraction method since there are some specialized steps and equipment, but we're cur..." | Read more » 18 days ago
Ag8n "I went to ohiomosslichen.org/ to see what's in the ohio area. Didn't seem like there was anything directly comparable to the lichens in the paper..." | Read more » 26 days ago
Ag8n "Out of curiosity only. " | Read more » 27 days ago
Ag8n "Ok, the parameters are listed. Is there an example of a study set up? " | Read more » 27 days ago
Ag8n "Thank you. That's what I was after. Much appreciated!!! " | Read more » 27 days ago
fongvania "I have access to the paper you're talking about--here is a snippet of the section you may be most interested in: Let me check if I'm allowed t..." | Read more » 27 days ago
Ag8n "Working my way through the paper. One of the things the original talks about is " Extraction by immersion in DMSO" and "OD435/OD415 nm". This is ..." | Read more » 27 days ago
fongvania "Thank you for reading! Let me know if there's anything I can help clarify " | Read more » 27 days ago
Ag8n "Quite interesting. It will take several more readings before it's understood. " | Read more » 28 days ago
bhamster "Hi @Cheesealmighty, thanks for sharing about your work. While it's not spectrometry, there are a couple research notes on turbidity sensors by @wma..." | Read more » about 2 months ago
Cheesealmighty "We won't be making any changes to the catheter itself, it's not much different from taking photos of the see through tube/collection chamber. It sh..." | Read more » about 2 months ago