Abstract

Charge-coupled device detectors are vulnerable to cosmic rays that can contaminate Raman spectra with positive going spikes. Because spikes can adversely affect spectral processing and data analyses, they must be removed. Although both hardware-based and software-based spike removal methods exist, they typically require parameter and threshold specification dependent on well-considered user input. Here, we present a fully automated spike removal algorithm that proceeds without requiring user input. It is minimally dependent on sample attributes, and those that are required (e.g., standard deviation of spectral noise) can be determined with other fully automated procedures. At the core of the method is the identification and location of spikes with coincident second derivatives along both the spectral and spatiotemporal dimensions of two-dimensional datasets. The method can be applied to spectra that are relatively inhomogeneous because it provides fairly effective and selective targeting of spikes resulting in minimal distortion of spectra. Relatively effective spike removal obtained with full automation could provide substantial benefits to users where large numbers of spectra must be processed.

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