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Molecular Orientation Analysis of Alkyl Methylene Groups from Quantitative Coherent Anti-Stokes Raman Scattering Spectroscopy

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journal contribution
posted on 17.12.2015, 07:57 by Chi Zhang, Jie Wang, Joshua Jasensky, Zhan Chen
Quantitative data analysis in coherent anti-Stokes Raman scattering (CARS) spectroscopy is important for extracting molecular structural information. We developed a method to derive molecular tilt angle with respect to the surface normal based on quantitative CARS spectral analysis. We showed that the tilt angle of methylene alkyl chains on a surface can be directly obtained from the CH2 symmetric/asymmetric peak ratio in a CARS spectrum. The lipid alkyl chain tilt angle from a lipid monolayer was measured to be ∼0° and was verified by sum frequency generation spectroscopy, which probes the orientations of the lipid methyl end groups. The tilt angle of a silane monolayer alkyl chain was derived to be ∼35°, which agrees with the theoretical prediction. This method is submonolayer sensitive and can also be used to interpret polarization-dependent signals in CARS microscopy. It can be applied to elucidate detailed molecular structure from CARS spectroscopic and microscopic measurements.