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A Beam Condenser/Miniature Diamond Anvil Cell Accessory for the Infrared Microspectrometry of Paint Chips

Volume 42, Number 5 (July 1988) Page 903-906

Schiering, David W.


Beam condensers are economical accessories for infrared (IR) spectrometers and can very effectively reduce IR detection limits to the nanogram range (and below). Sample presentation to the beam condenser has commonly been the microdisk, a miniature pellet pressed from a mixture of the analyte and an alkali halide salt. The sample must be ground prior to pressing of the pellet. For some small samples, such as paint chips, fibers, and polymers in general, grinding is not practical; however, frequently these samples are too thick for IR transmission measurements. As a rule of thumb, pathlengths of 10 to 30 μm of neat material give good spectral representations in the mid-IR region. This report describes the coupling of the miniature diamond anvil cell (High Pressure Diamond Optics, Tucson, AZ) to a new 5× beam condenser (Perkin-Elmer Corp., Norwalk, CT, P/N 0186-0794). The combination provides an easily implemented method of obtaining spectra from small, optically thick polymeric samples and offers advantages over sampling with the high-pressure diamond anvil cell.