Abstract

Visible-infrared sum-frequency spectroscopy is ideally suited to the study of surfaces and interfaces. This paper introduces new sum-frequency spectroscopy instrumentation that we have developed with two novel features: (1) stable and robust infrared generation in the 900–3100 cm<sup>-1</sup> (11–3.2 μm) region using an amplified Ti : sapphire oscillator with a home-built OPG/OPA, and (2) continuous tuning over either 900–2700 cm<sup>-1</sup> (11–3.7 μm) or 1800–3100 cm<sup>-1</sup> (5.5–3.2 μm) in a single experiment. All practical details of baseline correction issues due to the picosecond pulses (including variation in infrared (IR) energy, spatial and temporal overlap, Fresnel co- efficients) are addressed while demonstrating signal throughout this region from an amorphous gold surface. A sum-frequency spectrum from an oriented polymer is shown as a complete example of the data treatment, which reveals the vibrational modes accessible in this wavelength region.

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