Ocean Optics has introduced a new substrate for Raman spectroscopy applications. The RAM-SERS-SP Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy substrates use a proprietary gold-silver nanosponge alloy to produce highly sensitive, trace-level Raman spectroscopy measurements. The applications for SERS range from the detection of explosives and narcotics to food safety, anti-counterfeit tagging, and biological research.
SERS substrates amplify very weak Raman signals by multiple orders of magnitude. Fast, repeatable measurements of SERS-active analytes are possible even to parts per trillion levels. Silver-only SERS substrates work best with 532nm Raman excitation, and gold substrates are better suited to 785nm Raman systems. By combining the silver and gold on one substrate, the new SERS nanosponge substrates perform well with either wavelength. Also, when used with 638nm Raman excitation, the nanosponge substrates are enhanced to an even higher level of sensitivity.
RAM-SERS-SP nanosponge substrates are more robust than other options and handle the deposition of sensitive samples more effectively. The higher sensitivity of these substrates opens up new opportunities for SERS applications–particularly in addressing the growing need for fast, effective detection of explosives and pesticides.