Metrolab Blog

Raman Spectrospopy for Carbon Analysis

Raman spectroscopy is an ideal analytical tool for nondestructive analysis of carbon nanomaterials. Carbon nanomaterials constitute a variety of carbon allotropes including graphene, graphene oxide, carbon nanotubes, and carbon nanofibers, each exhibiting unique properties in electrical conductivity, thermal conductivity and mechanical strength. The Raman spectra of carbon nanomaterials are typically characterized by three major bands: the G-band, the D-band, and the 2D-band (also referred to as the G’-band). Though simple, the spectra of these nanomaterials are rich in information about their quality and their micro-structures such as crystallinity and level of disorder revealed by the peak positions, peak shapes, and peak intensities.
Carbon nanotubes (CNT) and graphene are the most popular carbon nanomaterials being studied currently since they possess so many significant features not found in other materials, including high strength, electrical and thermal conductivity. By re-designing and ordering their microstructure, they can be tailored to have even greater flexibility to meet human needs. Raman spectroscopy is a good tool to collect spectra of CNT, and information on the tube diameter and orientation angles. Graphene is often characterized by the ratio of bands related to the long range order, G-band/ D-band, also used in characterization of graphene oxides. Raman peak shift in graphene spectra is proof of slightly different structures, making it an ideal instrument to characterize the material structure in carbon. Raman can be used as a rapid, nondestructive test to ensure material quality in the manufacturing process, including detection of small manufacturing residuals.

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