Instrument: XplorA Raman-AFM/TERS system


Surface and Thin Film Analysis


139 Eberly Hall



The Horiba Scientific XploRA/SmartSPM confocal TERS system marries a high sensitivity Raman spectrometer with a high resolution AIST scanning probe/atomic force microscope, allowing for the cospatial collection of Raman vibrational spectra and AFM images. In particular, the instrument is designed to collect cospatial Raman/AFM images using tip enhanced Raman spectroscopy (TERS) in which significant signal enhancement of Raman scattering occurs via interactions of the sample with an atomically sharp noble metal (gold or silver) AFM probe. The system can also be used for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS), resonance Raman spectroscopy (RRS), and surface enhanced resonance Raman spectroscopy (SERRS). 

Key features of the instrument include:

  • 638 nm (24 mW), 473 nm (25 mW), and 785 nm (100 mW) lasers and corresponding optics for excitation
  • Four gratings for control of dispersion and spectral resolution
  • Andor cooled EMCCD detector for enhanced sensitivity of low light signals
  • Motorized polarizers (1/4 and 1/2 wave plates)
  • Motorized x,y,z stage and SWIFT FAST confocal Raman imaging
  • Conductivity head for measurement of conductive AFM images (CAFM)
  • Sample temperature control up to 300oC for AFM imaging
  • Tuning fork probe compatibility
  • Both top and side illumination access for TERS measurements

This instrument was purchased via a Defense University Research Instrumentation Program (DURIP) grant from the Office of Naval Research, ONR(N000141410765). Users of the instrument should acknowledge this in all publications making use of the equipment.

TERS hyperspectral imaging of individual SWCNTs. Raman spectra from single pixels of the image showing variation in the ratio of the D and G lines along the length of an individual nanotube (B and C), suggesting the presence of a defect. Spectrum A is the Raman background.