Defense Date


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Nanoscience and Nanotechnology

First Advisor

Massimo Bertino

Second Advisor

Loren Picco


Modern scientific instruments are significant capital investments for universities. These investments can be outside of the funding capabilities of some smaller universities or departments and can be a significant barrier in the pursuit of scientific breakthroughs. This project aims to provide a template for universities or research groups to upgrade, at a reasonable price, an existing Raman spectroscopy system to a Tip-Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (TERS) system. This system can serve as a permanent upgrade to an existing system or as a bridge necessary to prove the viability of a research path before significant capital investment in a commercial TERS system. This project explains, in detail, all required components of a TERS system and the rationale of each designed component. The enhancement factor demonstrated using this homebuilt TERS system shows the potential of this system as an alternative to much more expensive commercial systems.


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