A challenge existed, following the restriction of the use of CFC-113, to identify a carrier solvent which would deliver excellent results in latent fingerprint development on porous surfaces.

Fluids like acetone, petroleum ether and heptane achieve varying results, but all are flammable.

3M™ Novec™ HFE-7100 was identified as an excellent replacement carrier solvent for CFC-113 by three independent forensic laboratories in the UK, France and USA. Their conclusions were as follows:

Novec fluid HFE-7100:

  • Produced ridge crispness as good or better than CFC-113 with both Ninhydrin and DFO
  • Caused minimal running or smearing in a wide variety of inks and substrates
  • Had an excellent safety and environmental profile