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Raman Spectroscopy for Planetary Exploration and Characterization of Extraterrestrial Materials

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Item Summary

Title:Raman Spectroscopy for Planetary Exploration and Characterization of Extraterrestrial Materials
Authors:Acosta-Maeda, Tayro
Date Issued:Aug 2016
Publisher:[Honolulu] : [University of Hawaii at Manoa], [August 2016]
Abstract:The sharp spectral features of Raman spectra are widely recognized to provide unequivocal and accurate chemical characterization of organic and inorganic compounds. Therefore Raman spectroscopy can be used to detect minerals, water bearing minerals, organic and biological materials and biomarkers in the context of planetary science. This dissertation extends the applicability of the Raman technique both laboratory based micro-Raman and remote Raman sensing ahead of planetary exploration missions to Mars employing Raman spectrometers. The interpretation of Raman imaging from a meteorite taken with a micro-Raman system revealed a close correlation between the blue color in natural ringwoodite and a new observed Raman peak that shows strong resonance Raman enhancement. The data suggest that ringwoodite exists both in the spinel structure and in the partially inverse spinel structure. In the field of remote Raman, this dissertation provides carefully derived Raman cross-section values for various organic liquids and inorganic polyatomic ions in aqueous solutions that will be useful for estimating detection capabilities of 532 nm excitation remote Raman systems for planetary exploration. Suitability of remote 532 nm Raman systems for future applications is explored. A portable, compact time-resolved instrument using a 3-inch diameter telescope is used it to demonstrate daytime detection of amino acids and nucleobases from a distance of 8 m. The measurements with a larger 8-inch Raman system demonstrate that it is possible to acquire good quality Raman spectra of various materials from a 430 meter remote distance during daylight with detection times of 10 seconds, and in some cases as short as 1 second, during daylight and in a realistic outdoor context. To my knowledge, these are the only remote Raman spectra at this distance that provide unambiguous detection of compounds important for planetary science, such as water and water ice, dry ice, sulfur, sulfates, various minerals and organics, and atmospheric gases. This dissertation demonstrates the large potential of micro-Raman investigations and the significant improvement of the remote Raman technique as well as its suitability for Solar System exploration.
Description:Ph.D. University of Hawaii at Manoa 2016.
Includes bibliographical references.
Appears in Collections: Ph.D. - Geology and Geophysics

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