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Ultra Violet Resonance Raman Spectroscopy in Lignin Analysis: Determination of Characteristic Vibrations of p-Hydroxyphenyl, Guaiacyl, and Syringyl Lignin Structures

Volume 57, Number 1 (Jan. 2003) Page 58-66

Saariaho, Anna-Maija; Jääskeläinen, Anna-Stiina; Nuopponen, Mari; Vuorinen, Tapani

Raman spectroscopy of wood and lignin samples is preferably carried out in the near-infrared region because lignin produces an intense laser-induced fluorescence background at visible excitation wavelengths. However, excitation of aromatic and conjugated lignin structures with deep ultra violet (UV) light gives resonance-enhanced Raman signals while the overlapping fluorescence is eliminated. In this study, ultra violet resonance Raman (UVRR) spectroscopy was used to define characteristic vibration bands of model compounds of p-hydroxyphenyl, guaiacyl, and syringyl lignin structures at three excitation wavelengths (229, 244, and 257 nm). The intensities of each band, relative to the intensity of the aromatic vibration band at 1600 cm - 1, were defined and the most suitable excitation wavelength was suggested for each structure. p-Hydroxyphenyl structures showed intensive characteristic bands at 1217- 1214 and 1179-1167 cm-1 with excitation at 244 nm, whereas the bands of guaiacyl structures were more intensive with 257 nm excitation. Most intensive characteristic bands of guaiacyl structures were found at 1289-1279, 1187-1185, 1158-1155, and 791-704 cm-1. Syringyl structures had almost identical spectra with 244 and 257 nm excitations with characteristic bands at 1514-1506, 1333-1330, and 981-962 cm-1. The characteristic bands of the three structural units were also found from the compression wood, softwood, and hardwood samples, indicating that UVRR spectroscopy can be applied for the determination of chemical structures of lignin.