What is Raman Spectroscopy?
The Raman effect occurs when light impinges upon a molecule and interacts with the electron cloud that binds that molecule. While most of the incident light is scattered with its wavelength unchanged (i.e., elastically scattered), a small fraction (on the order of 10-6) of the light is inelastically scattered and exits with longer wavelength and simultaneously promote the molecule into a more energetic vibrational state. This effect was named after one of its discoverers, Sir C. V. Raman, who, in 1928, accomplished his observation with sunlight and filters. The location and intensity of the Raman lines are determined by the underlining molecular structure and are unique to the molecule and its environment, thus the Raman spectrum bears a molecular spectral finger print.
For Raman spectroscopy both excitation and detection are achieved in the visible or near-infrared range, but the obtained spectral information is in the infrared range (difference between excitation and detection). Detection of light in the visible/near infrared is generally much easier than in the infrared since it is less susceptible to thermal noise. Raman spectroscopy is a powerful analytical technique owning to its nondestructive nature and simplicity in sample preparation and handling. However, its full potential could not be reached until now due to expensive and bulky components.
Why the Time for Raman is Now?
In the late 1990’s the buildup of the optical telecommunications infrastructure brought down price barriers for many lasers while also reducing their physical dimensions. Holographic optical components are much more accessible than before. Together with compact yet powerful computers/microprocessors high performance Raman spectrometers can be made in portable, even handheld, form factors at a fraction of the cost of traditional research instruments today.
Taking Raman Instrumentation out of the Lab and to the Sample!
BaySpec’s Raman Instruments are designed to meet real-world challenges for best-in-class performance, long-term reliability, compact size and ultra-low fluorescence interference for measurement of a wide-ranging number of biological, chemical, geological, and other samples. Benefiting from experience manufacturing high-volume spectral monitoring devices for the telecommunications industry, BaySpec’s Raman Spectrometers utilize cost-effective field-proven components.
BaySpec's Raman Instruments are designed for high performance low light spectroscopy. Designs incorporating BaySpec's high efficiency transmission Volume Phase Gratings (VPGs), fast f/1.8 optics, and soft (-20°C) or deep-cooled (-55°C) detector arrays deliver best-in-class performance. Now available in 532m, 785nm and 1064nm or custom excitation wavelength options.
The all-new XantusTM Series of Raman Analyzers are designed for ruggedized, field deployment and low-cost ownership. Designed to meet the stringent requirements of MILSPEC-810 for humidity, temperature and ruggedness, Xantus Analyzers have convenient on-board touch-screen PCs or can output to an existing smart phone or laptop-via bluetooth.
The NomadicTM Raman Microscopy is the only Raman microscope on the market today simultaneously equipped with three excitation sources (532, 785, and 1064nm). Combining the power of optical microscopy and Raman spectroscopy in true confocal geometry, the NomadicTM provides molecular fingerpint information on every point of the samples, with sub-micrometer spatial resolution. It can accommodate smaples in solid, power, liquid or gel forms. Depending on the nature of your sample, you may choose 532nm excitation for its high sensitivity or 1064nm excitation to suppress fluorescence or 785nm to address both concerns.