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Fabrication of Micron-Diameter Silver Electrodes for Surface-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy

Volume 47, Number 6 (June 1993) Page 855-857

Todd, Elizabeth A.; Morris, Michael D.

Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) has been investigated as a sensitive detection method for a wide variety of species. It is an especially powerful technique for the study of nitrogen- and oxygen-based small molecules. Most research has employed substrates in formats adapted to macro sample sizes. These include colloid suspensions, metal electrodes with cross sections of 0.5-2 mm, and metal particles on solid supports such as microscope slides or sintered glass filters. However, it has been shown that if the total integrated laser power reaching the solid SERS medium remains constant, the generated SERS intensity is independent of the surface area probed. There should be little or no signal loss with microprobes down to diameters approaching 1 μm, which is roughly the Rayleigh diffraction limit of moderate-numerical-aperture microscope objectives.