Tip Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (TERS)

Tip Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (TERS)

Tip Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (TERS) has emerged as a novel method for direct, label-free nondestructive analysis of chemical matter at the nanoscale.


TERS uses the Raman effect to provide chemical identification via vibrational spectroscopy, complementing infrared spectroscopy. As in regular Raman spectroscopy and confocal Raman microscopy, the sample is illuminated with a monochromatic (laser) source and the backscattered radiation is dispersed to obtain the spectral information.


Unlike confocal Raman microscopy, TERS utilizes the SPM tip as a near field antenna, thus providing a much higher spatial resolution (10nm). The SPM tip thus plays a central role. To serve as effective near field antenna for TERS, it must display a pronounced surface plasmon resonance at the wavelength of interest.

Nanoscale strain in silicon and barium oxide with TERS
Nanoscale strain in silicon and barium oxide is detected by TERS using Innova-IRIS system; data courtesy of Dr. Daisuke Kosemura, Meiji University

TERS expands the application of AFM beyond topographical imaging and addresses nanoscale characterization in fields such as:

  • Layer structure and defectivity in carbon allotropes such as graphene and carbon nanotubes
  • Nanochemical imaging in polymers, nanomaterials, and pharmaceuticals
  • Nanostructure and strain detection in semiconductors

TERS is available on Bruker's Innova-IRIS AFM

The Innova-IRIS provides exceptionally easy setup and use, even with the full AFM-Raman integration in place. The system also exhibits the stringent performance required for both advanced atomic force microscopy and Raman spectroscopy, while preserving the tip to enable tip-scattering optical techniques.

The Bruker TERS solution provides:

  • Most complete TERS solution with Bruker-exclusive high-contrast IRIS TERS probes
  • Highest performance, most complete AFM capabilities
  • Bruker’s exclusive high contrast TERS probes enable  measurements on a wide range of samples
  • True nanoscale spectroscopy targeted to your application

Read More about our innovative Bruker solutions: Innova-IRIS and Icon-Raman