I understand that molecules adsorbed to a coinage metal surface experience plasmonic enhanced Raman shifts and I have a spectrometer that I would like to perform SERS measurements with but do not have a Raman microscope/probe. I do have a light-tight cuvette cell and I am wondering if I could coat the inside of a cuvette on two sides with silver to obtain SERS spectra of liquids? This is a standard 1x1 cm cuvette and the SMA cable going to the spectrometer has a long pass filter installed for the correct wavelength.

Most of the literature I have read points to using a suspension of silver nanoparticle colloids mixed with the analyte liquid within the cuvette to obtain SERS spectra, but I have not been able to find any papers that use what I am proposing.
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    $\begingroup$ @EdV This paper on ResearchGate suggests it may be possible: "(SERS) of 4-mercaptopyridine (4-mpy) adsorbed on HNO3 etched silver foil, chemically deposited silver films (silver mirror) and silver colloids were measured". $\endgroup$
    – AndyW
    Aug 30, 2019 at 8:07
  • $\begingroup$ I did an independent study with Prof. J Alan Creighton, one of the discoverers of the surface-enhanced Raman effect, during an exchange year at the University of Kent at Canterbury. The goal was to make a pyridine-silver sandwich complex to compare the molecular spectrum with that of the surface-bound pyridine. Unfortunately, this does not give me any extra insight into your question... $\endgroup$
    – Karsten
    Aug 30, 2019 at 13:17
  • $\begingroup$ It really depends. In a back scattering configuration a simple aluminium foil folded around the sample holder can enhance raman spectra of thin films. It really depends on the sample. Most of the liquid probed would be far away from any silver, that's why you mentioned nanoparticles $\endgroup$
    – Alchimista
    Aug 31, 2019 at 8:59

1 Answer 1


from theory this should work what you have scatched here. When it comes to SERS a main point is, that you got a surface which is rough enough that you can create mini hot-spots for the electric field. This will give you the enhancement.

Maybe you must put a little bit of work in you set up. The scattering is needed to arrive at the detector. maybe you try a Raman probe or do a other angle for the wall with silver on it.

Best regards!


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