Final Posting

Hey everyone,

I’m sad to say this will be my last blog post. I started this project with the goal of determining whether silver nanoprisms would be a useful substrate for the identification of art pigments using surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). The project turned out to be a major success, even though I found that silver nanoprisms are not the ideal substrate.

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End of Summer Research

Hey All,

I have finished the work up of this summer’s research, and the results look great. The data shows a somewhat Guassian curve, which is what we were hoping for. These results show that there is an optimal mixture of salt and silver nanospheres that creates higher intensity signals. From here, I will continue this project throughout my senior year, with the hopes of testing on actual art samples by the end of the year. I have now tested different pigments, and will move on to known paint samples. I’m very excited to continue this research because of the promising results that were obtained this summer.

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Hectic Week

Hello All,

This week has been very hectic, but the summer is finally over. I was very busy finishing classes and making sure my research was in a good place for a break. My main focus was to collect data before leaving school. This goal was accomplished and has given me some very interesting, and promising, data to analyze. I will be working on the data over the next few days to determine what the results were. So far the results look very promising. If everything goes well, I will continue this project into the fall semester and begin working on more real world applications for the developed substrate. I will update as soon as I finish the data workup to let everyone know what the results are and to sum up and finalize the summer project. I hope everyone has had a great summer. I know I have.

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The Week of Many Spectra

Hey Everyone,

Last week was a very exciting week for my project. As I stated in my previous post, we were having troubles with our silver nanosphere synthesis a couple of weeks ago. We have corrected the problem, although we never pinpointed what the problem actually was, and I have been very busy taking spectra of modified silver nanospheres on art pigments. We hypothesized that adding a salt to silver nanospheres would increase the intensity of our surface enhanced Raman spectra (SERS), and it would appear that we were correct. This has been noted several times in the literature, and it was exciting to be able to reproduce the results of previous experiments. Over the next week I will be working very hard to better understand the phenomena that create these trends and to analyze various pigments. We hope to see our modified silver nanospheres enhance the SERS spectra of different types of pigments. However, we hypothesize that it will be more difficult to identify a trend for other pigments.

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Silver Nanoprisms vs. Silver Nanospheres: The Battle Ensues.

Hey Everyone,

So far this summer has been exciting… and confusing. I have spent the majority of my summer working on optimizing substrates for surface enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS). I began the summer synthesizing nanoprisms of different sizes to determine what size had the greatest effect on the SERS enhancement factor (EF) and comparing the produced EF to the EF of our current subsrtate, silver nanospheres. It is hypothesized in the literature and from an analysis of the theory behind the SERS EF phenomena that nanoprisms will create greater EFs due to the local surface plasmon resonance and the dipoles and quadropoles of the nanoprism.

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