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Annu Rev Phys Chem. 2012;63:65-87. doi: 10.1146/annurev-physchem-032511-143757. Epub 2012 Jan 3.

Single-molecule surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy.

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The MacDiarmid Institute for Advanced Materials and Nanotechnology, School of Chemical and Physical Sciences, Victoria University of Wellington, New Zealand.


A general overview of the field of single-molecule (SM) surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) as it stands today is provided. After years of debates on the basic aspects of SM-SERS, the technique is emerging as a well-established subfield of spectroscopy and SERS. SM-SERS is allowing the observation of subtle spectroscopic phenomena that were not hitherto accessible. Examples of the latter are natural isotopic substitutions in single molecules, observation of the true homogeneous broadening of Raman peaks, Raman excitation profiles of individual molecules, and SM electrochemistry. With background examples of the contributions produced by our group, properly interleaved with results by other practitioners in the field, we present some of the latest developments and promising new leads in this new field of spectroscopy.

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