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A Beam Condenser for Use with a High Pressure Diamond Anvil Cell

Volume 28, Number 4 (Aug. 1974) Page 377-379

Long, Gary J.; Miles, Grant; Ferraro, John R.

Several recent papers and reviews have amply demonstrated the importance of high pressure studies on the electronic absorption bands in various coordination compounds. While studying the ligand field spectra of several pressure-sensitive transition metal complexes, we found that, although it was possible to obtain visible absorption spectra (in the range 650 to 300 nm), it was impossible to obtain usable spectra in the near infrared region (2000 to 650 nm). The difficulty arises because of the large size of the spectrophotometer sample beam and the small cross-sectional area (0.2 to 1.0 mm2) of the diamonds in the high pressure cell. Several attempts were made to overcome the small size of the diamond windows by masking the slit image in the reference beam of the spectrophotometer. However, these attempts were all unsuccessful because the masking necessitated operating the instrument at very high gain to prevent the slits from opening completely. The resulting spectra were extremely noisy and useless. We have now successfully overcome this problem by using a specially designed beam condenser.