Nanoscale Infrared Spectroscopy

nanoIR Customer Testimonials

See what Bruker's Anasys nanoIR customers have to say

The National Physical Laboratory requires extremely precise and reliable measurements and the nanoIR2-s provided exactly the solution we desired.

Prof. Alexander Tzalenchuk, National Physical Laboratory, Teddington, UK

"The National Graphene Metrology Centre at NPL will be using the new nano-IR2s system from Anasys Instruments for both nearfield infrared spectroscopy and imaging. Anasys Instruments have been very responsive to our needs and provided exactly the solution we desired. The instrument itself performed out of the box. This level of quality in the technology we use helps NPL provide the most informative and reliable measurement data to our customers."

– Prof. Alexander Tzalenchuk, National Physical Laboratory, Teddington, UK

Intercalated epitaxial graphene on SiC substrate scattering SNOM absorption image 5um x 5um image.

We selected the nanoIR2-s for our research due its novel characterization capability providing high spatial resolution molecular information.

Prof. Dr. Ir. Tom Hauffman, Research Group Electrochemical and Surface Engineering, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium

"As a group focusing on the functionalisation of surfaces and their electrochemical interactions, we are always looking for non-traditional techniques combining high lateral resolution with molecular information. Therefore, we selected the nanoIR2-s system because of its capability to combine above mentioned conditions.

We are looking forward using the nanoIR2-s to support research into analysis of hybrid systems, electrolyte uptake, inhomogeneity of semi-conductor surfaces, and we believe that the system will support the characterisation by techniques such as XPS or ToF-SIMS.”

– Prof. Dr. Ir. Tom Hauffman, Research Group Electrochemical and Surface Engineering, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, Brussels, Belgium

AFM-IR has had a tremendous impact for the nanoscale characterization of heterogeneous biological protein samples.

Dr. Francesco Simone Ruggeri, Research Fellow, Knowles Lab, University Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

“nanoIR spectroscopy, simultaneously exploiting AFM and infrared spectroscopy, is applied to investigate at the nanoscale the misfolding process and the structure of the amyloid species present during the aggregation process. This information is fundamental for the comprehension of the molecular basis of neurodegenerative disorders.”

References: Ruggeri, Scientific Reports, 2016; Ruggeri, Nature Communications, 2015

– Dr. Francesco Simone Ruggeri, Research Fellow, Knowles Lab, University Cambridge, Cambridge, UK

The nanoIR2 is a go-to tool for unique nanoscale IR analysis, and has solved many problems to the delight of our academic and industrial users.

Gerald Poirier, Manager, Advanced Materials Characterization Laboratory, University of Delaware

"The University of Delaware purchased the nanoIR2 in a multiuser facility which I manage. Once the instrument was available to my users, it became a go to tool for unique IR analysis. The nanoIR2 has proved to be a very robust platform with great stand-alone AFM capabilities. The user interface is clear and very intuitive, and the software never crashes. Many problems in manufacturing and failure analysis have been solved or identified to the delight of my industrial users. I look forward to many more years of satisfying use of the Anasys nanoIR2“.

– Gerald Poirier, Manager, Advanced Materials Characterization Laboratory, University of Delaware

Tapping AFM-IR images show lenticular crystals; overall thickness (50 nm) indicates multilayer crystals. Characteristic IR absorption band of PHBHx. The band shape between 1700-1760 cm⁻¹ reveals fairly similar crystallinity at different sites. An absorption band at 1510 cm⁻¹ is also observed, indicating presence of aromatic moiety, not observed for 3.9 mol% sample. Data courtesy of Rabolt et. al, University of Delaware.

For the first time we have been able to test decades-old hypotheses in surface engineering, corrosion and coatings science with speed, precision and at unprecedented spatial resolution.

Prof. Stuart Lyon, AkzoNobel Professor of Corrosion Control, The University of Manchester


“The nanoIR appears to work like magic! It’s AFM-IR technique provides unrivalled access to nanoscale chemical information of relevance to the surface modification of materials. For the first time we have been able to test decades-old hypotheses in surface engineering, corrosion and coatings science with speed, precision and at unprecedented spatial resolution.”

Read the publication: Insights into Epoxy Network Nanostructural Heterogeneity Using AFM-IR

– Prof. Stuart Lyon, AkzoNobel Professor of Corrosion Control, The University of Manchester

The AFM-IR technique has been used to map localised water uptake under humid conditions for a model epoxy phenolic coating to understand corrosion mechanisms. The water sorption is enhanced around regions containing residual epoxy groups (less cross-linked) as shown by the chemical images collected at absorption bands for the CH stretch, weakly bound water and strongly bound water. S. Morsch, S. Lyon, P. Greensmith, S. D. Smith, and S. R. Gibbon, Faraday Discus., (2015). DOI: 10.1039/c4fd00229f

Despite no prior AFM experience, we were able to get AFM-IR up and running and to obtain key insights into our multi-layer film samples within a couple of weeks.

Dr. Mauritz Kelchtermans, Project Leader Global Advanced Characterization, ExxonMobil Chemical (Retired)

"After evaluating the competing technologies for nanoscale chemical composition of polymers, we chose to bring the powerful nanoscale IR spectroscopy (AFM-IR) technology into ExxonMobil. The AFM-IR instrument is easy to use – we were able to get it up and running quickly and to obtain key insights into our samples within a couple of weeks, despite having no prior AFM experience. We liked that nanoIR spectra correlate well to FTIR spectral libraries without peak shifts or distortions that are intrinsic to techniques that measure scattered light."

Read the publication: Characterization of a polyethylene–polyamide multilayer film using nanoscale infrared spectroscopy and imaging

– Dr. Mauritz Kelchtermans, Project Leader Global Advanced Characterization, ExxonMobil Chemical (Retired)

NanoIR absorbance spectra of multilayer films.

The nanoIR2-s provides us great flexibility on various kinds of materials in our lab, especially biological materials.

Prof. Hu Tiger Tao, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Texas at Austin


“nanoIR combines the powerful functions of nanoscale IR spectra and chemical imaging based on two complementary techniques—photothemal AFM-IR and scattering SNOM. This provides us great flexibility on various kinds of materials in our lab (especially biological materials). Its user-friendly interface and easy operation accelerates my projects. The reliable local customer technical support ensures its great performance all the time.”

– Prof. Hu Tiger Tao, Department of Mechanical Engineering, University of Texas at Austin

Top left: IR nano-imaging using s-SNOM: the phase contrast between silk and silicon, illustrating the dominant protein structure within the amide I vibration; top middle: spectra of a crystalline silk thin film with embedded amorphous silk nanopatterns of ∼30 nm, characterized by AFM–IR,distinguishing nanoscale structural heterogeneity; top right: AFM–IR spectra of electron-induced structural transitions in silk proteins; table 1: quantification of the silk protein secondary structures. Data courtesy of Tao et. al, DOI: 10.1038/ncomms13079

At no time in the last 20 years has the future for correlating heterogeneity and chemical structure looked brighter.

Prof. John Rabolt, Karl W. and Renate Boer Professor and Founding Chair, Materials Science and Engineering, University of Delaware

“Using the nanoIR2 from Anasys Instruments over the last 18 months, my colleagues and I at the University of Delaware have been able to revisit many exciting research problems in phase separated polymer thin films and identify the chemical composition and morphology of the domains that result. I personally feel that the support that Anasys has given my research group in overcoming sample preparation challenges and by making their instrumental expertise available to us almost 24/7 has provided the opportunity and capability for us to examine many of the fundamental chemical and structural properties of polymers at the nanoscale. At no time in the last 20 years has the future for correlating sample heterogeneity and chemical structure looked brighter and more promising.“

– Prof. John Rabolt, Karl W. and Renate Boer Professor and Founding Chair, Materials Science and Engineering, University of Delaware

Data courtesty of University of Delaware, Liang Gong, John Rabolt, and Bruce Chase

The nanoIR2-s is a perfect tool for a multi-user center with a combination of Soft Matter and Condensed Matter research.

Dr. Ferenc Borondics, Principal Beamline Scientist at the IR spectromicroscopy beamline, Soleil Synchrotron

“We chose the nanoIR2-s for the Soleil Synchrotron since it is a perfect tool for a multi-user center like ours where we undertake research into a wide range of materials. The nanoIR2-s uniquely combines the complementary techniques of AFM-IR and s-SNOM. AFM-IR provides true, model-free nanoscale IR spectroscopy and is ideal for research on materials such as life sciences, polymer and organics. Additionally s-SNOM is a complementary technique that provides sub-20nm complex optical property imaging and is most suitable for materials like graphene, 2D materials and photonics.”

– Dr. Ferenc Borondics, Principal Beamline Scientist at the IR spectromicroscopy beamline, Soleil Synchrotron

Professor Alexandre Dazzi, Dept of Physics, University Paris-Sud, and Dr Ferenc Borondics, Principal Beamline Scientist with the nanoIR2-s nanoscale IR spectroscopy system, installed at the SIMS line at the Soleil Synchrotron, Saint Aubin, France.

Our studies demonstrate the enormous potential of nanoIR in the area of protein misfolding and aggregation.

Prof. Giovanni Dietler, Director, Laboratory of the Physics of Living Matter, EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland

“The nanoIR technique was used in our studies to provide a deeper understanding of protein misfolding and aggregation, and was able to confirm previous theories about protein structure that could not be tested due to the limitations of available techniques. There are significant medical and scientific implications of this finding that could change pharmacological and technological approaches to protein aggregation.”

Read the publication: Brain disease scenarios revised by images of toxic aggregation

– Prof. Giovanni Dietler, Director, Laboratory of the Physics of Living Matter, EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland

AFM-infrared chemical maps and spectra of Josephin proteins before incubation at 37°C. (a) AFM height image. Infrared absorption map at (b) 1,700 cm⁻¹, (amide I), (c) 1,655 cm⁻¹ (amide I), (d) 1,300 cm⁻¹ (amide III). Scale bar, 2mm. (e) Infrared spectra. (f) Average oligomeric infrared spectrum and secondary-structure deconvolution of amide I band Source: F.S. Ruggeri et al,. DOI: 10.1038/ncomms8831

The nanoIR is a powerful tool for studying polymeric materials. It provided the spatial resolution vital to the success of this project.

Prof. Su Zhaohui, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Physics and Chemistry, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry

“The nanoIR is a powerful tool for studying polymeric materials. It provided the spatial resolution vital to the success of this project.”

– Prof. Su Zhaohui, State Key Laboratory of Polymer Physics and Chemistry, Changchun Institute of Applied Chemistry

(a) AFM height image and (b) AFM-IR map of the methyl symmetric C−H bending at 1378 cm⁻¹. (c) AFM-IR spectra taken at the locations marked in (a) and (b), normalized to the 1378 cm⁻¹ band, indicative of different ethylene contents as shown by the intensity of the 1456 cm⁻¹ band.

With AFM-IR we can now ‘see’ the chemistry in the morphology.

Dr. Greg Meyers, R&D Fellow, Dow Chemical

“The AFM-IR solves a longstanding need in polymeric materials development for chemical analysis at the nanoscale. By doing it with an AFM, it simultaneously addresses one of the most important missing capabilities of the scanning probe microscopy platform – lack of chemical specificity, thus enabling the further growth of the AFM technique in new applications and markets. We are now able to ‘see’ the chemistry in the morphology.”

– Dr. Greg Meyers, R&D Fellow, Dow Chemical

High-resolution AFM-IR images (left) may be used to identify sub-surface features and the composition of polymers localized at the surface interface. Average profiling (right) may be performed as a function of height or IR response down to the nanometer scale. Additionally, this technique allows for a better understanding of the formation of newly reacted species.

The nanoIR2 is a workhorse for us. It provides multiple chemical composition applications in an easy to use system. Demand led us to acquire a second nanoIR platform.

Dr. Jiping Ye, Nissan Analytical Research, Kanagawa, Japan

“The nanoIR2 is a workhorse tool for us. It has multiple high value applications tied to nanoscale chemical composition ranging from Polymer blends and films to nano-contaminants. Anasys has packaged this powerful capability within an easy to use platform. They also provide us with outstanding support. The wide demand among our customers for this nanoscale IR capability led to us acquiring our second nanoIR platform whose capacity utilization has also outstripped our demand forecast.”

– Dr. Jiping Ye, Nissan Analytical Research, Kanagawa, Japan

AFM-IR spectra of Nafion fuel cell.

The nanoIR is the most significant advance in AFM based measurements of the last decade.

Dr. Andrezej J Kulik , Laboratory of the Physics of Living Matter, EPFL (Retired)

“The nanoIR is the most significant advance in AFM based measurements of the last decade. By enabling the AFM to get chemical composition information via nanoscale IR spectroscopy, for the first time, it has solved the 35 year old problem that the AFM is chemically blind. Unlike other approaches like TERS, nanoIR is easy to use and reliable, repeatable and does not rely on a proprietary probe. In our Life Sciences focused research group, we used the nanoIR to get protein secondary structure on single protein fibrils which is a major advance for fields like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, Huntington’s and Ataxia’s research. I expect it to similarly impact profoundly many other fields such as antibiotic-resistant bacterial strains, or chromosome studies.”

Read the publication: Nanoscale infrared spectroscopy of light harvesting proteins, amyloid structures and collagen fibres

– Dr. Andrezej J Kulik , Laboratory of the Physics of Living Matter, EPFL (Retired)

A. Kulik, F. S. Ruggeri et al., nanoscale Infrared spectroscopy of LHCII proteins and amyloids, Microscopy and analysis, 2014.