Montana Instruments recently collaborated with the Burch Group at Boston College and the University of Toronto to design, test, and characterize a variable temperature Raman microscope setup utilizing Montana Instruments Cryo-Optic and ATSM technologies. The results were published this month in the Review of Scientific Instruments, “Low vibration high numerical aperture automated variable temperature Raman microscope.”
Previous low temperature Raman microscope designs have faced tradeoffs between high NA and objective performance, sacrificing either mechanical stability, thermal stability, or collection efficiency. Cumbersome operation and long integration times have also been an issue.
The team combined a number of enabling technologies into the setup, using the closed-cycle Cryostation as the base sample platform. The Cryostation’s automated temperature control (3.2K - 350K), thermal stability (less than 10mK ptp), and low vibration design provide a stable base environment for the measurements. The Cryo-Optic Microscope module with temperature controlled 0.9 NA objective features the high mechanical stability and low drift needed to achieve long integration times for high signal to noise data, and a small spot size. To further improve mechanical and thermal stability, the Agile Temperature Sample Mount is used for precise temperature control of the sample, facilitating rapid temperature changes and time to stability.
Figure 1: Model of Raman cryo-microscope. Source.
The complete micro-Raman spectroscopy system featured high collection efficiencies and enabled “long measurement times with very high temperature, spatial, and spectral resolution.”
The original scientific article (Rev. Sci. Instrum. 87, 043105 (2016); http://dx.doi.org/10.1063/1.4944559) was published on April 5, 2016.