Sub-micron IR resolution and simultaneous Raman for polymeric material characterization

O-PTIR provides 10-30x higher IR chemical spatial resolution than FTIR but correlates to FTIR transmission and ATR-FTIR

O-PTIR overcomes many of the limitations of Raman for polymer measurement while providing complementary and confirmatory results

Simultaneous O-PTIR and Raman spectra of polymers and plastics is a superior approach for material identification in terms of throughput than two standalone instruments

Closeup of a single cell representing the use of the mIRage on sub cellular scale material analysis

Download more information here:

Applications Note: Submicron, simultaneous and non-contact IR+Raman spectroscopy for direct fiber characterization

Applications Note: Submicron resolution IR spectroscopy and imaging of multilayer films for food packaging

Webinar: View our Forensics webinar on paint

Publication: Analysis of the chemical distribution of self-assembled microdomains with the selective localization of amine-functionalized graphene nanoplatelets by optical photothermal infrared microspectroscopy


Polymers are present in virtually all products we interact with daily. With increasing environmental awareness, polymer science is looking at more novel and complex solutions to improve functionality and reduce environmental impact. These requirements often exceed the limits of traditional IR microscopy, especially when it comes to spatial resolution. The mIRage IR Microscope, with its unique submicron spatial resolution using a non-contact reflection mode technique, is able to meet even the most demanding of analytical and sample characterization needs.

O-PTIR – polymer (PLA-ACM) phase dispersions

High quality spectra were collected in seconds, with high spatial resolution images collected in minutes. Image on the right shows image resolution of an inclusion of ACM as small as 249nm! Clear spectral differences attributable to the expected chemical domains of PLA and ACM were observed.
IR image: 20x20um, 100nm step size, ~3min/image
Sample courtesy of Dr Rudiger Berger, Max Planck Inst Polymer Research, Mainz, Germany

Data illustrating O-PTIR – polymer (PLA-ACM) phase dispersions
Data image of polymer laminates analysis with O-PTIR

Polymer laminates analysis with O-PTIR

  • Key peaks at 1642 cm-1 (Nylon) and 1142cm-1 are used for single frequency imaging
  • Image collected at 100nm steps (~3mins per image)
  • Central EVOH layer of 1.6microns clearly visible!

IR spectroscopy for direct fiber characterization

O-PTIR spectra of PP-based nanofibers with 800 nm diameter

Data image showing the use of mIRage for direct fiber characterization

Imaging and spectroscopy of bioplastic laminates

Composite (red/green) single frequency images

O-PTIR Scan of Bioplastic Laminate

Linear sampling scan spanning 8.0 µm measured every 100 nm apart (plotted only every 200 nm and across 2 µm for clarity) across the boundary of the bioplastic laminate, moving from the pure PHBHx layer to the pure PLA layer.

Gradual spectral changes over the space much greater than the optical resolution suggest the mixed distribution of PLA and PHBHx without any sharp boundary.

No clear isosbestic point indicates that the system is not a simple binary mixture.

PLA and PHBHx contributions are overlapped and mingled in the fingerprint region

Image showing mIRage imaging and spectra of bioplastic laminates
Image of spectra showing sub micron analysis of transition from one material to another

Little to no sample preparation of a multilayer film

Image showing a sliced piece of polymer multilayer film that required little to no sample preparation

Left: A multilayer packaging film block face sample with manually selected markers for subsequent O-PTIR spectra collection. Right: The spectra easily show difference in composition of each layer.

Submicron spatial resolution between film layers

Image demonstrating the submicron spatial resolution between film layers

Left: An optical image of a food multilayer film sample. Right: Corresponding O-PTIR spectra spaced 500 nm apart, with clear spectral distinction.