Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) is an optical analytical technique frequently used to identify organic and polymeric compounds in solid, liquid and gaseous samples.
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Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy
Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) is an optical analytical technique frequently used to identify organic and polymeric compounds in solid, liquid and gaseous samples. It is widely used for gaining structural information of unknown compounds in samples, residue and contaminants analysis, product development, failure analysis, investigative studies, etc.
FTIR uses infrared light to irradiate a sample and polymeric and organic compounds, present in the sample, produce their distinctive fingerprint in the form of an infrared absorption spectrum (interferograms). The FTIR software applies fourier transformations to convert this interferogram to IR spectra that are unique to the various functional groups and chemical bonds present in the sample. Comparing these spectrographs against available databases can give quantitative analysis of the compounds present in the materials.
There are different sampling techniques such as transmission, specular reflectance, diffuse reflectance, and Attenuated Total Reflection (ATR). Specular reflectance is used for both organic and inorganic samples having large, flat, and reflective surfaces. In diffuse reflectance, powder samples are examined in the form of a KBr pellet. In ATR, insoluble, multi-layer, or solid samples are analyzed using hard crystal material.
Fourier Transform Infrared Spectroscopy (FTIR) Common Uses
Determination of water content in thin plastic and composite parts
Interfacial characterization of rubber nanocomposites
Indication of a different degree of polymerization (curing) of a sample by recording its deviations from an expected IR spectrum
Monitoring of oxidation of the aluminium film
Investigation of proteins in hydrophobic membrane environments
Quantitative detection of contaminants and additives in the sample induced by handling and processing
Indication of oxidation and degradation of the sample
Identifies the presence of organic and inorganic compounds in the sample
Detection of fillers in the gemstones
Short scan time as all wavelength measurements are performed simultaneously
Precise and reproducible measurements
The wavelength scale is calibrated by a HeNe laser, which is stable and accurate – the user does not need to calibrate the instrument
The detectors are quite sensitive, and the optical throughput is much higher
Mechanically simple equipment because of only one moving part
Less interference on the analysis by the stray light
The results remain true if there is no change in atmospheric conditions throughout the experiment
Several molecules such as water may interfere with the sample analysis as they completely absorb infrared light
The glass is not an appropriate substrate for FTIR analysis as it absorbs infrared light
Can not detect atoms or monoatomic ions such as entities that contain no chemical bonds
Can not detect homonuclear diatomic molecules such as O2, N2, and Cl2
Some inorganic species exhibit an FTIR spectrum such as silicates, carbonates, nitrates, and sulfates
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Fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) provides chemical composition and physical state information of films, solids, powders, or liquids. It is used to identify and characterize unknown materials, Identify contamination, Identify additives in polymers, etc.
Typical fourier transform infrared spectroscopy (FTIR) analysis includes quantitative analysis of organic and inorganic samples. Reference libraries are available with 1000’s standards that are used to identify materials and for quantitative analysis. Gaseous phase analysis is available where FTIR can be coupled with thermal analysis, chromatography, and rheometry.