Review of analytical techniques for arson residues

Pert, Alastair D. and Baron, Mark G. and Birkett, Jason W. (2006) Review of analytical techniques for arson residues. Journal of Forensic Sciences, 51 (5). pp. 1033-1049. ISSN 0022-1198

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Official URL: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1556-4029.2006.00229.x

Abstract

Arson is a serious crime that affects society through cost, property damage, and loss of life. It is important that the methods and technologies applied by fire investigators in detection of evidence and subsequent analyses have a high degree of reliability, sensitivity, and be subject to rigorous quality control and assurance. There have been considerable advances in the field of arson investigation since the 1950s. Classification of ignitable liquids has been updated to include many new categories due to developments in the petroleum industry. Techniques such as steam or vacuum distillation and gas chromatography (GC) with flame ionization detection that may have been considered acceptable—even a benchmark—40 years ago, are nowadays generally disfavored, to the extent that their implementation may almost be considered as ignorance in the field. The advent of readily available mass spectrometric techniques has revolutionized the field of fire debris analysis, increasing the degree of sensitivity and discrimination possible considerably. Multi-dimensional GC—particularly GC × GC—while not yet widely applied, is rapidly gaining recognition as an important technique. This comprehensive review focuses on techniques and practices used in fire investigation, from scene investigation to analysis.

Item Type:Article
Additional Information:Arson is a serious crime that affects society through cost, property damage, and loss of life. It is important that the methods and technologies applied by fire investigators in detection of evidence and subsequent analyses have a high degree of reliability, sensitivity, and be subject to rigorous quality control and assurance. There have been considerable advances in the field of arson investigation since the 1950s. Classification of ignitable liquids has been updated to include many new categories due to developments in the petroleum industry. Techniques such as steam or vacuum distillation and gas chromatography (GC) with flame ionization detection that may have been considered acceptable—even a benchmark—40 years ago, are nowadays generally disfavored, to the extent that their implementation may almost be considered as ignorance in the field. The advent of readily available mass spectrometric techniques has revolutionized the field of fire debris analysis, increasing the degree of sensitivity and discrimination possible considerably. Multi-dimensional GC—particularly GC × GC—while not yet widely applied, is rapidly gaining recognition as an important technique. This comprehensive review focuses on techniques and practices used in fire investigation, from scene investigation to analysis.
Keywords:Arson residues, Smoke, Mass spectrometry, Gas chromatography, Forensic science, Arson analysis, Accelerant, Ignitable liquid, Fire residue, Solid phase microextraction
Subjects:F Physical Sciences > F410 Forensic Science
Divisions:College of Science > School of Life Sciences
ID Code:4763
Deposited By: Bev Jones
Deposited On:31 Oct 2011 09:51
Last Modified:13 Mar 2013 09:03

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