Singlet oxygen luminescence detector based on low-cost InGaAs avalanche photodiode

Alexander E. Moskalensky*, Tatyana Yu. Karogodina, Alexey Yu. Vorobev, Sergei G. Sokolovski

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Molecular oxygen excited to singlet state (Singlet oxygen, 1O2) becomes highly reactive and cytotoxic chemical. 1O2 is commonly generated by photoexcitation of dyes (photosensitizers), including the photodynamic therapy and diagnostics of cancer. However, the formation of singlet oxygen is often unwanted for various light-sensitive compounds, e.g. it causes the photobleaching of fluorescent probes. In either case, during a development of new photosensitive chemicals and drugs there is a need to evaluate the amount of 1O2 formed during photoexcitation. The direct approach in measuring the amount of singlet oxygen is based on the detection of its luminescence at 1270 nm. However, this luminescence is usually weak, which implies the use of highly sensitive single-photon detectors. Thus the existing instruments are commonly complicated and expensive. Here we suggest an approach and report a device to measure the 1O2 luminescence using low-cost InGaAs avalanche photodiode and simple electronics. The measurements can be performed in stationary (not time-resolved) mode in organic solvents such as tetrachloromethane (CCl4), ethanol and DMSO. In particular, we performed spectral-resolved measurements of the singlet oxygen luminescence in CCl4 with the device and demonstrated high complementarity to literature data. The simple setup allows to evaluate the efficiency (or speed) of singlet oxygen generation and hence facilitates the development and characterization of new photosensitizers and other photosensitive chemicals.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere00224
Early online date17 Aug 2021
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2021

Bibliographical note

Copyright: 2021 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (

Funding: The study was supported by the Russian Science Foundation (grant # 18-15-00049).


  • Singlet oxygen luminescence
  • Photosensitizers
  • Avalanche photodiode


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