Gold-polymer nanocomposites: studies of their optical properties and their potential as SERS substrates
Article first published online: 14 OCT 2005
Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Journal of Raman Spectroscopy
Volume 36, Issue 12, pages 1134–1142, December 2005
How to Cite
Giesfeldt, K. S., Connatser, R. M., De Jesús, M. A., Dutta, P. and Sepaniak, M. J. (2005), Gold-polymer nanocomposites: studies of their optical properties and their potential as SERS substrates. J. Raman Spectrosc., 36: 1134–1142. doi: 10.1002/jrs.1418
- Issue published online: 27 NOV 2005
- Article first published online: 14 OCT 2005
- Manuscript Accepted: 25 JUL 2005
- Manuscript Received: 12 MAR 2005
- US Department of Energy, Office of Basic Energy Sciences. Grant Number: FG02-02ER15331.
- Environmental Management Science Program. Grant Number: FG07-01ER62718.
- surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy;
- optical extinction spectroscopy;
- Au nanoparticles
Polymer-nanometallic-particle composites have demonstrated technological potential owing to their unique optical and electrical properties. In this article, we report on composites prepared via physical vapor deposition of gold metal onto pliable polydimethylsiloxane (PDMS) polymer. Rapid Au diffusion and nanometallic-particle formation in a phase-separated surface layer of the PDMS creates unique tunable sub-surface-based composites. The rate of deposition and average Au thickness can be manipulated to tune the optical properties, which are studied by visible wavelength optical extinction spectrometry and surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). DC conductivity measurements were made during Au deposition to study percolation conditions for the materials and depth profiling was performed by X-ray photoelectron spectrometry (XPS). This work presents the use of Au-PDMS nanocomposites in combination with a sample translation technique (STT) for the improved SERS qualitative and quantitative analysis. This translation approach considerably improves the reproducibility and the sensitivity of the technique by minimizing the thermal and photolytic effects inherent in SERS. The Au-PDMS nanocomposites exhibit an affinity for amine and nitro-based compounds that are biologically relevant and point toward the potential for being used as substrates for biologically based SERS experiments. Sample Raman spectra with the nanocomposite under STT-SERS conditions are included. Copyright © 2005 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.