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International Journal of Optics
Volume 2012, Article ID 591083, 8 pages
Research Article

Gold Nanoparticles as Probes for Nano-Raman Spectroscopy: Preliminary Experimental Results and Modeling

1Institut des Matériaux Jean Rouxel (IMN)-UMR 6502, 2 rue de la Houssinière, BP 32229, 44322 Nantes Cédex 3, France
2Laboratoire de Physique des Gaz et des Plasmas, UMR 8578 CNRS-Université Paris-Sud, Bat. 210, Campus d’Orsay, 91405 Orsay, France

Received 28 July 2011; Revised 14 December 2011; Accepted 29 December 2011

Academic Editor: Ali Passian

Copyright © 2012 V. Le Nader et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


This paper presents an effective Tip-Enhanced Raman Spectrometer (TERS) in backscattering reflection configuration. It combines a tip-probe nanopositioning system with Raman spectroscope. Specific tips were processed by anchoring gold nanoparticles on the apex of tapered optical fibers, prepared by an improved chemical etching method. Hence, it is possible to expose a very small area of the sample (~20 nm2) to the very strong local electromagnetic field generated by the lightning rod effect. This experimental configuration was modelled and optimised using the finite element method, which takes into account electromagnetic effects as well as the plasmon resonance. Finally, TERS measurements on single-wall carbon nanotubes were successfully performed. These results confirm the high Raman scattering enhancement predicted by the modelling, induced by our new nano-Raman device.