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Waveguide-based machine readable fluorescence security feature for border control and security applications.

Johny, Jincy; Bhavsar, Kaushal; Officer, Simon; Adams, Morgan; Prabhu, Radhakrishna


Jincy Johny

Kaushal Bhavsar

Simon Officer

Morgan Adams


Henri Bouma

Robert James Stokes

Yitzhak Yitzhaky


Border security challenges and immigration issues are increasing considerably in recent years. Counterfeiting and fraudulent use of identity and other travel documents are posing serious threats and safety concerns worldwide, ever since the advancement of computers, photocopiers, printers and scanners. Considering the current scenario of illegal migration and terrorism across the world, advanced technologies and improved security features are essential to enhance border security and to enable smooth transits. In this paper, we present a novel dual waveguide based invisible fluorescence security feature and a simple validation system to elevate and strengthen the security at border controls. The validation system consists of an LED (light emitting diode) as excitation source and an array photodetector which helps in the simultaneous detection of multiple features from the fluorescence waveguides. The fluorescence waveguides can be embedded into the identity document as micro-threads or tags which are invisible to the naked eye and are only machine readable. In order to improve the sensitivity, rare earth fluorescence materials are used which absorb only specific ultraviolet (UV) or visible (VIS) wavelengths to create corresponding fluorescent emission lines in the visible or infrared wavelengths. Herein, we present the preliminary results based on the fluorescence spectroscopic studies carried out on the fabricated rare earth doped waveguides. The effect of different rare earth concentrations and excitation wavelengths on the fluorescence intensity were investigated.

Start Date Sep 10, 2018
Publication Date Nov 7, 2018
Publisher Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers
Series Title Proceedings of SPIE
Series Number 10802
Series ISSN 0277-786X
ISBN 9781510621879
Institution Citation JOHNY, J., BHAVSAR, K., OFFICER, S., ADAMS, M., PRABHU, R. 2018. Waveguide-based machine readable fluorescence security feature for border control and security applications. In Bouma, H., Prabhu, R., Stokes, R.J. and Yitzhaky, Y. (eds.) Proceedings of the 2nd Counterterrorism, crime fighting, forensics and surveillance technologies 2018 conference: co-located with the Society of Photo-optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE) Security and defence conference 2018, 10-11 September 2018, Berlin, Germany. Proceedings of the (SPIE), 10802. Bellingham, WA: SPIE [online], article ID 1080209. Available from:
Keywords Fluorescence; Rare earth; Waveguide; Spectroscopy; Security feature; Border control; Anti-counterfeiting


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