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Copyright MTEC 2017

MTEC's founder, John McClelland, began research in photoacoustics at Iowa State University in 1975 after work at Bell Laboratories renewed worldwide interest in Alexander Graham Bell's 1880 discovery of the photoacoustic effect. Bell's Spectrophone invention, the first photoacoustic spectrometer, was reported in the Philosophical Magazine in 1881. The renewed interest in the field lead to continuing biannual meetings, the International Conferences on Photoacoustic and Photothermal Phenomena (ICPPP) (see Links), with the first held in 1979 at Iowa State University.


MTEC Photoacoustics, Inc. was founded in 1984 to fill a need for reliable, high performance photoacoustic detectors.  MTEC's first detector won a 1985 R&D 100 Award and was rapidly recognized as the industry standard by both FTIR manufacturers and their customers.  MTEC photoacoustic detectors have been purchased by over 1300 industrial, government, and university laboratories in over twenty countries around the world.


MTEC's products include the PAC300 photoacoustic detector, options for sequential PAS, DRIFTS, and transmission measurements and for microsampling, and a device for microlapping of samples with depth varying composition. MTEC has designed a number of custom photoacoustic detectors for gas analysis, microsamples, large area samples, and an automated unit for sequential analysis of 40 samples shown here.


Customers are welcome to send samples to MTEC for measurement of demonstration spectra, to evaluate FTIR photoacoustic spectroscopy for their needs.  MTEC's applications laboratory is well situated for evaluating capabilities of FTIR photoacoustic spectroscopy due to extensive experience with the technique and the availability of both research and QC level FTIR spectrometers.


MTEC sells directly to end users and also through all the major FTIR companies and many accessory firms in the U.S. and foreign countries.

A.G. Bell's

1881 Spectrophone



1985 R&D 100 Award

Winning Photoacoustic




MTEC's Automated


Detector with a

40 sample carousel