Dr. John Allison, Professor of Chemistry and Director of Forensic Chemistry, has recently received research funding from the Department of Justice/National Institute of Justice. The Proposal, entitled “Forensic Analysis of Pigmented Inks”, was written by Dr. Allison and Professor Jay Siegel, Director of the Forensic and Investigative Sciences Program at IUPUI (Indiana University Purdue University in Indianapolis). The project involves the analysis of a new class of inks that may appear on questioned documents ranging from wills to altered checks, pigmented inks. The $261,000 grant, a two year budget, will be used to support students doing this research at both institutions.
Few methods are currently available for this type analysis. Students in Dr.Allison’s research lab will use laser desorption mass spectrometry (LDMS), while Dr. Siegel’s group will use pyrolysis GC/MS to identify ink components. While the first announcement of the grant was made in 2005, funds were only made available as of January 2006. Siegel and Allison have been successful in securing NIJ funding previously, when they were both faculty members at Michigan State University.