Effect of Interparticle Field Enhancement in Self-Assembled Silver Aggregates on Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering
The presence of so-called hot spots, regions with strongly enhanced electromagnetic field, is a critical property of a substrate enabling detection of surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) signals at high enhancement levels. In this work, the effect of interparticle field enhancement on SERS signals was investigated comparing SERS spectra of ethylenediaminetetraacetic-disodium salt in the chemically produced colloids with isolated and aggregated silver nanoparticles using 473 and 532-nm wavelength excitation. The presence of aggregates in the colloidal solution resulted in SERS spectra that were insensitive to wavelength excitation and much richer in structural information and of higher resolution than the corresponding SERS spectra for the colloid with isolated nanoparticles. The experimental SERS spectra were found to be consistent with the finite-difference time-domain simulation results that explored the electromagnetic response of the isolated and aggregated nanoparticles. These results provide more evidence to suggest that the aggregate formation offers favorable electromagnetic properties increasing sensitivity of Raman spectroscopy.
KeywordsInterparticle field enhancement Silver nanocolloids Raman spectroscopy Optical spectroscopy Transmission electron microscopy Electrodynamic simulation
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