Surface-enhanced Raman and electron spectroscopic investigations of lead-modified silver surfaces.
AuthorKellogg, Diane Schneider
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractSurface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) is a powerful means for obtaining vibrational data from the metal/electrolyte or metal/gas interfacial environment. However, SERS is only observed for a limited number of metal surfaces under certain experimental conditions. Before this method can become a universal tool, the enhancement mechanism(s) must be understood. The results reported in this dissertation assess both electronic and chemical contributions to the SERS mechanism. The electronic properties of the metal are altered by systematic deposition of Pb or Cu onto a substrate that supports intense SERS, Ag. The chemical nature of the interface is altered with different probe molecules. The effect of Pb deposition on the SERS enhancing ability of Ag electrodes has previously been investigated with strongly adsorbed probe molecules. The behavior of cyanide species in the presence of Pb⁺² is complicated by the necessity of maintaining low solution pH to prevent Pb(OH)₂ precipitation; thus, the predominant solution species is HCN. Although previous reports state that no SERS can be detected from cyanide-containing solutions below pH 6, intense SERS signals can be obtained at pH 2 if sufficiently positive electrode potentials are maintained. The two unresolved SERS bands observed in acidic solutions are attributed to HCN which interacts with the Ag surface in end-on and side-on configurations. The predominant effect of Pb deposition on HCN SERS is HCN displacement. Enhancement due to charge transfer processes is not significant, while electromagnetic effects dictate the residual SERS intensity remaining after the initial HCN displacement. The supporting electrolyte anion affects the rate of change of the potential dependent C≡N stretch in basic CN⁻ media. A correlation between the rate of frequency change and anion charge/radius ratio was observed at potentials near and slightly negative of the Ag potential of zero charge in basic CN⁻ media. These results demonstrate the extraordinary sensitivity of SERS to interfacial conditions. The contributions from chemical and electromagnetic enhancement are further assessed by following excitation wavelength dependence of the SERS intensity of pyridine and Cl⁻ as a function of Cu coverage. Contributions from both are observed, but chemical enhancement is less evident for Cu than for Pb deposition. This is related to the smaller change in work function that occurs as a consequence of Cu versus Pb deposition on Ag surfaces.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Arizona
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