The UMALASERLAB research centre, created in 1987 within the Department of Analytical Chemistry in the Faculty of Sciences, University of Malaga, works towards the development of laser radiation analytical applications, their dissemination in Spain and their transfer to the production sector. The UMALASERLAB specializes in the processing and analysis of materials by means of ablation, using high-strength pulsed lasers, onset of plasmas and detection of their emission, and develops requested research projects funded under the EU R&D Framework Programme, the National Research Plan, the Andalusian Research Plan as well as by various public and private entities. The UMALASERLAB develops well-planned research projects aiming at investigating challenging problems defined by the requesters, carries out studies on laser photo-ablation processes and other radiation interactions with materials, ionisation processes and plasma diagnostics, and provides all related metrology capacities, including atomic emission spectrometry, ionization mass spectrometry, secondary ionization mass spectrometry, temporal resolution spectroscopy as well as a full range of inspection and surface preparation techniques. The group also offers quick and cost-effective solutions to a variety of research and technical problems in diverse applications areas, including, among the most relevant, microelectronics, process monitoring technologies, environmental control, cultural heritage and inspection of objectives in terms of defence and security.
The UMALASERLAB has not only an important research knowledge, it also has a broad experience in developing and building specific scientific instrumentation for customized applications. It performs various experiments in local configuration and has an LIBS sensor for submerged objects characterization (50 meters depth) in remote mode as well as three highly advanced field-deployable LIBS sensors for long-distance analysis (with variable ranges of applicability between 5 and 100 meters) and a portable Raman sensor. For this purpose, the centre has a sophisticated equipment consisting of a variety of laser excitation sources (ion Ar+, colouring, He-Ne, Nd:YAG and a femtosecond laser source), various spectrographs and monochromators, intensified CCD cameras, miniature spectrometers and two time-of-flight mass spectrometers as well as one secondary ion mass spectrometer (SIMS).
In addition, the UMALASERLAB works closely with the Central Research Support Centres of the Autonomous University of Madrid, which provide additional characterization technologies, among which X-ray diffraction (XRD), atomic spectrometry (ICP-OES, ICP-MS and XRF), mass spectrometry (GC-MS, LCMS and IRMS), vibrational spectroscopy (FT-IR y FT-Raman), X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy (XPS), auger electron spectroscopy, TEM/SEM microscopies, fluorescent and confocal optical microscopies, scanning electron microscopy and near-field techniques (AFM-NSOM).
Luisa María Cabalín Robles
Dr. Luisa M. Cabalín is a Professor in the Department of Analytical Chemistry at the University of Malaga (Spain) and carries out her research work in the laser laboratory of the UMA (UMALASERLAB) in the research group of Professor Javier Laserna. She obtained her Degree in Chemical Science from the University of Malaga in 1989 and her PhD from the same University in 1994. She then spent two years as a postdoctoral researcher under the direction of Professor Jean M. Mermet at the University Claude Bernard Lyon-I (Laboratoire des Sciences Analytiques, Lyon, France).
Her lines of research focus on the area of lasers in chemical analysis, laser-induced plasma spectrometry; surface analysis using laser ablation with optical detection, imaging techniques; instrumental solutions for chemical analysis in the industry; on-line analytical methodology; field analytical instrumentation; development of spectroscopic instrumentation. Since 1997, she has taken part in 9 European projects.
At present, she is the main researcher of the LIFE project at the UMA.