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Special Issue "Advances in SERS-Active Substrates for Ubiquitous Sensing"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Sensor Materials".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 December 2020) | Viewed by 3201

Special Issue Editors

Head of Laboratory of Applied Plasmonics, Micro- and Nanoelectronics Department, Belarusian State University of Informatics and Radioelectronics, 220013 Minsk, Belarus
Interests: raman spectroscopy; SERS; biomedical analysis; plasmonic and luminescent nanomaterials; wet chemical and electrochemical processing
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

In recent decades, sensing technologies have become so powerful that sensors pervade our daily lives. Different sensing principles help us to control people’s homes, environment, and health. Indeed, the scientific literature contains about 4 million papers relating to electrochemical, piezoelectric, mechanical, optical, and many other sensors. However, we often feel that existing sensing approaches have reached their limit in accuracy, rate, number of analysed parameters, and objects. This is especially critical for medicine, security, and environmental monitoring, which insistently demand less concentration and a wider spectrum of detectable molecules. To move towards new frontiers in molecular sensing, researchers have turned to nanomaterials’ disruptive features. In particular, unbelievable results have been achieved through a combination of metallic nanostructures and Raman scattering. This sensing method is known as surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) spectroscopy. Using the SERS technique, we cannot only confirm or deny the presence of target molecules in analysing matter but must also fingerprint it and carefully reveal its concentration. An incredible increase of Raman intensity is observed when the molecules of analyte are immobilized near nanoparticles of noble metals. This is mostly caused by plasmonic effects in metallic nanostructures. However, charge transfer between chemisorbed molecules and nanoparticles of metals also contributes to the Raman signal enhancement. Just a few years ago, SERS-spectroscopy would have met with reasonable disbelief in the applied sensing community. For instance, there can be difficulties to find target specie in complex analyte and to provide SERS-spectra reproducibility due to molecules’ changes and destruction in high electromagnetic fields between metallic nanoparticles, different orientation of molecules near the SERS-active surface, the cytotoxicity of metallic nanoparticles for cells, and so on. However, today SERS sensing should cause more excitement than scepticism. In this Special Issue, we propose to reveal why our perception of the SERS technique and SERS-active materials has changed over the past few years. We would like to collect state-of-the-art works on recent advances in SERS sensing that have helped overcome its above-mentioned hurdles. The emphasis should be kept on breakthroughs in designing and engineering SERS-active substrates based on but not limited to radically new geometry of metallic nanostructures’ and materials’ combinations. All novel aspects of functionalization of SERS-active substrates, as well as non-conventional handling of SERS principles and algorithms of SERS-spectra processing that allow one to improve the reliability of sensing, are invited to be reported. The Special Issue seeks to cover SERS-sensing of both diverse molecules and entire liquid, vapor, or solid matters. Review articles summarizing the use of SERS-spectroscopy for sensing in different areas (medical diagnosis/therapy, ecology, pharmaceutics, forensic science, security, materials science, etc.) or specific families of molecules are welcome.

Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hugo Aguas
Assoc. Prof. Dr. Hanna Bandarenka
Guest Editor

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  • Surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS);
  • Fabrication and characterization of SERS-active substrates;
  • Limit of detection;
  • Label-free sensing;
  • Noble metals;
  • Surface plasmon resonance;
  • Charge transfer;
  • Metallic nanoparticles.

Published Papers (1 paper)

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Fabrication of Au Nanorods by the Oblique Angle Deposition Process for Trace Detection of Methamphetamine with Surface-Enhanced Raman Scattering
Sensors 2019, 19(17), 3742; - 29 Aug 2019
Cited by 21 | Viewed by 2651
Oblique angle deposition (OAD) is a simple, low cost, effective, and maskless nanofabrication process. It can offer a reliable method for the mass fabrication of uniform metal nanorods which can be used as the surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrate with an excellent enhancing [...] Read more.
Oblique angle deposition (OAD) is a simple, low cost, effective, and maskless nanofabrication process. It can offer a reliable method for the mass fabrication of uniform metal nanorods which can be used as the surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) substrate with an excellent enhancing performance. Up to now, Ag nanorods SERS substrates have been extensively studied. However, Ag is chemically active and easy to oxidize under atmospheric conditions. Comparatively, Au is chemically stable and has better biocompatibility than Ag. In this paper, we in detail, studied the electromechanical (EM) field distribution simulation, fabrication, and application of Au nanorods (AuNRs) on trace detection of methamphetamine. According to the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) calculation results, the maximum EM intensity can be obtained with the length of AuNRs to be 800 nm and the tilting angle of AuNRs to be 71° respectively. The aligned Au nanorod array substrate was fabricated by the OAD process. The two key process parameters, deposition angle, and deposition rate were optimized by experiments, which were 86° and 2 Å/s, respectively. Using 1,2-bis (4-pyridyl) ethylene (BPE) as the probe molecule, the limit of detection (LOD) was characterized to be 10−11 M. The AuNRs were also used to detect methamphetamine. The LOD can be down to M (i.e., 14.92 pg/ml), which meet the requirements of the on-site rapid detection of the methamphetamine in human urine (500 ng/ml). Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Advances in SERS-Active Substrates for Ubiquitous Sensing)
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