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Meggers Award Winner

Raman Spectroscopy Using a Spatial Heterodyne Spectrometer: Proof of Concept
Authors: Gomer, Nathaniel R.1; Gordon, Christopher M.1; Lucey, Paul2; Sharma, Shiv K.2; Carter, J. Chance3; Angel, S. Michael4

Abstract:

The use of a spatial heterodyne interferometer-based spectrometer (SHS) for Raman spectroscopy is described. The motivation for this work is to develop a small, rugged, high-resolution ultraviolet (UV) Raman spectrometer that is compatible with pulsed laser sources and that is suitable for planetary space missions. UV Raman is a particular technical challenge for space applications because dispersive (grating) approaches require large spectrographs and very narrow slits to achieve the spectral resolution required to maximize the potential of Raman spectroscopy. The heterodyne approach of the SHS has only a weak coupling of resolution and throughput, so a high-resolution UV SHS can both be small and employ a wide slit to maximize throughput. The SHS measures all optical path differences in its interferogram simultaneously with a detector array, so the technique is compatible with gated detection using pulsed lasers, important to reject ambient background and mitigate fluorescence (already low in the UV) that might be encountered on a planetary surface where samples are uncontrolled. The SHS has no moving parts, and as the spectrum is heterodyned around the laser wavelength, it is particularly suitable for Raman measurements. In this preliminary report we demonstrate the ability to measure visible wavelength Raman spectra of liquid and solid materials using an SHS Raman spectrometer and a visible laser. Spectral resolution and bandpass are also discussed. Separation of anti-Stokes and Stokes Raman bands is demonstrated using two different approaches. Finally spectral bandpass doubling is demonstrated by forming an interference pattern in both directions on the ICCD detector followed by analysis using a two-dimensional Fourier transform.

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