Project started!

November 1, 2016


On November 1, 2016, the FLAIR project began under Horizon 2020, the European Union's framework program for research and innovation. 


FLAIR – an abbreviation for Flying ultrA-broadband single-shot InfraRed Sensor. FLAIR project aims at developing an airborne, compact and cost-effective air quality sampling sensor for sensitive and selective detection of molecular fingerprints in the 2-5 μm and 8-12 μm infrared atmospheric windows. The sensor is based on an innovative supercontinuum laser that provides ultra-bright emission across the entire spectrum of interest. Such a light source in combination with a novel type of multipass cell in conjunction with specifically developed uncooled detector arrays will ensure highly sensitive detection. Broadband single-shot 2D high resolution absorption spectra capture will allow highly selective molecular detection in complex gas mixtures in the ppbv levels in real time. This high performance sensor constitutes a breakthrough in the field of trace gas spectroscopy. Moreover, in a hybrid approach, the main spectroscopic sensor will be complemented by a fine particle detector in order to obtain a complete picture of the air quality. Mounted on an adapted and optimized UAV (drone), the sensor will enable pervasive sensing on large scales outside urban environments where air quality monitoring remains challenging, e.g. along gas pipelines or around chemical plants. Also, FLAIR can guide emergency measures in case of chemical fires or leaks, wildfires or volcanic eruptions or even serve for oil and gas exploration or explosives related molecules detection, by far more cost-effectively than for missions on manned research aircraft. As such FLAIR provides a novel and ubiquitous tool addressing air quality related safety issues. The sensor prototype will be tested at TRL 4 in the lab and at TRL 5 on-board a UAV in the context of a well-defined and controlled validation test setting.


Eight partners – 3 SMEs, 1 industrial partner and 4 RTDs from Portugal, Spain, Netherlands, Sweden, Denmark, and Switzerland, are involved in the project, which will run from November 2016 to November 2019.


The ambition of the project FLAIR is to propose solutions that will provide beyond state-of-the-art technology both at the system (airborne air quality monitoring) and subsystem levels (photonics).


Project details

Project Title: Flying ultrA-broadband single-shot InfraRed Sensor

Project Acronym: FLAIR

Starting Date: 1st November 2016

Project Duration: 36 months

Call Identifier: H2020-ICT-2016-1

Grant Agreement No 732968

Project Budget: € 4,277,813

EU Funding: € 3,072,020

Project Coordinator: Tekever AS (Portugal) Mr. Andre Oliveira 


Project Participants




EMPA - Swiss Federal Laboratories for Materials Science and Technology (Switzerland)

CSEM - Swiss Center for Electronics and Microtechnology (Switzerland)

Technical University of Denmark (Denmark)


Radboud University Nijmegen (Netherlands)

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Press release about FLAIR on Photonics21

December 14, 2017

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February 25, 2019

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Radboud University Nijmegen 


Comeniuslaan 4, 6525 HP

Nijmegen, Netherlands


Dr. Frans J. M. Harren - Email

 +31 24 365 2124

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This project is an initiative of the Photonics Public Private Partnership co-funded by the European Union's Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 732968