Resonance Raman studies can often benefit from decreased sample temperature. With biological samples like frozen protein solutions, the spectral peaks are significantly narrowed at liquid nitrogen temperature due to the reduced molecular motion. Lowering the temperature can also minimize
protein denaturation from local heating by the exciting laser beam. Semiconductors and their superlattices are another class of materials where Raman measurements often must be made at low temperatures. For many such samples the Raman features are very weak or not observable at room temperature;
some mode intensities have a strong temperature dependence, and some modes are active only at low temperature. It is significant that most, if not all, of the features can be observed at liquid nitrogen temperatures, even though published reports often use lower temperatures requiring the
more expensive and cumbersome liquid helium.
Department of Physics, Emory University, Atlanta, Georgia 30322
Publication date: October 1, 1992
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