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Raman spectroscopy relies on inelastic scattering, or Raman scattering, of monochromatic light, usually from a laser in the visible, near infrared, or near ultraviolet range. The laser light interacts with molecular vibrations, phonons or other excitations in the system, resulting in the energy of the laser photons being shifted up or down. The shift in energy gives information about the vibrational modes in the system.
Raman spectroscopy offers several advantages for microscopic analysis. Since it is a scattering technique, specimens do not need to be fixed or sectioned. Raman spectra can be collected from a very small volume (< 1 µm in diameter); these spectra allow the identification of species present in that volume. Water does not generally interfere with Raman spectral analysis. Thus, Raman spectroscopy is suitable for the microscopic examination of minerals, materials such as polymers and ceramics, cells, proteins and forensic trace evidence.
ICAM equipment includes:
- Bruker RAM II at the University of Cambridge
- Renishaw Raman/Pl Micro-Spectroscopy System at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- WiTec Raman spectrometer at Imperial College London
- Horiba T64000 Triple Stage Raman Spectrometer at The University of Manchester
- At the Cambridge Graphene Centre: Renishaw RM1000, Renishaw InVia, Horiba LabRam HR800 and Horiba LabRaman Evolution.
- Microscopes with Raman:
- Horiba LabRAM HR Evolution at the University of Cambridge
- Nanophoton Raman 11 at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
- Horiba T64000 Triple Stage Raman at The University of Manchester
- Horiba LabRAM Evolution HR Raman Spectrometer at The University of Manchester
- Atomic force microscopes with Raman:
- NTEGRA Spectra – Renishaw Raman and NTMDT NTEGRA Spectra AFM/Raman system at Imperial College London