Space: the final frontier! This month, Applied Spectroscopy has really taken off, as the Focal Point review this month is on the subject of planetary Raman spectroscopy. Mike Angel and Nathaniel Gomer of the University of South Carolina, Shiv Sharma of the University of Hawaii and Chris McKay of NASA Ames have all been working on the development of standoff Raman spectrometers for operation on other planets. They are interested in the capability of remote Raman spectroscopy to identify biologically and geologically important analytes. The techniques that they have developed and the spectra that they show in their article are not only relevant for planetary applications but also for a variety of other applications where standoff detection is needed. (The remote sensing of explosives from mobile platforms comes immediately to mind.)
As a side note, the cover art that these authors have produced in collaboration with Jonell Clardy, our graphics editor, is one of the more visually attractive covers with which the journal has been graced for many years. I have been tremendously impressed with the first draft of the cover art that all our featured authors have produced over my term as editor-in-chief. Jonell then adds her professional touch to yield a cover that is both visually appealing and technically illustrative of the Focal Point articles.
As is becoming the norm for each issue of the journal, the February issue covers a wide spectrum of topics, including a remarkable paper from Paul Bohn’s group on single molecule enzyme dynamics. Other papers include fluorescence spectroscopy for the recognition of a C-C mismatch in a DNA duplex, chemiluminescence for recognizing certain natural products, in situ Raman spectroscopy as a tool for process analytical technology (PAT), optimization of UV Raman spectroscopy, noise characterization in circular dichroism spectroscopy, two-dimensional correlation analysis for distinguishing between immature and mature cotton fibers from their mid-infrared ATR spectra and measurement of concentration from the mid-infrared spectra of mixtures of ionic liquids and water. The final full contributed paper in this issue reports on the use of NIR transmission spectroscopy to determine the depth profile of fatty acids in porcine adipose fat tissue. Once again, the range of topics that can be investigated by various spectroscopic techniques is apparent from the list of topics in a single issue of Applied Spectroscopy.
See Applied Spectroscopy, Volume 66, Number 2 (2012) for a full list of articles.