Preview of Member Only Content
For full access: or Become a Member
The Slope Detector Does Not Always Detect The Presence Of Mouth Alcohol
By Michael P. Hlastala
The alcohol breath test is an indirect means of estimating the blood alcohol concentration (BAC). The most important assumption is that after a prolonged exhalation, the end-exhaled breath alcohol concentration (BrAC) accurately reflects the alveolar air, and hence, BAC. Implicit in that assumption is that no alcohol has been added to the breath as it passes from the lungs to the breath-testing unit (BTU). However, if there is alcohol in the oral cavity or pharynx, it will vaporize during exhalation and add to the BrAC. The functions of the slope detector have been designed with the goal of ensuring that a valid alveolar air sample is obtained.
Exhaled breath is monitored during the exhalation to obtain a suitable breath sample. Under normal circumstances, BrAC increases during exhalation. The original developers of the breath test reasoned that the BrAC rise would continue until the alveolar air was obtained, at which point the BrAC would level off. The first purpose of the slope dete
Want to read more?
The Champion archive is reserved for NACDL members.
NACDL members, please login to read the rest of this article.
Not a member? Join now.
Or click here to see an overview of NACDL Member benefits.
See what NACDL members say about us.
To read the current issue of The Champion in its entirety, click here.
- Media inquiries: Contact NACDL's Director of Public Affairs & Communications Ivan J. Dominguez at 202-465-7662 or email@example.com
- Academic Requests: Full articles of The Champion Magazine are available for academic and research purposes in the WestLaw and LexisNexis databases.