High Sensitivity SERS Substrate of a Few Nanometers Single-Layer Silver Thickness Fabricated by DC Magnetron Sputtering Technology

Hsing Yu Wu, Hung Chun Lin, Guan Yi Hung, Chi Shun Tu, Ting Yu Liu, Chung Hung Hong, Guoyu Yu, Jin Cherng Hsu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


Surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is commonly used for super-selective analysis through nanostructured silver layers in the environment, food quality, biomedicine, and materials science. To fabricate a high-sensitivity but a more accessible device of SERS, DC magnetron sputtering technology was used to realize high sensitivity, low cost, a stable deposition rate, and rapid mass production. This study investigated various thicknesses of a silver film ranging from 3.0 to 12.1 nm by field emission scanning electron microscope, X-ray diffraction, and X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy. In the rhodamine 6G (R6G) testing irradiated by a He-Ne laser beam, the analytical enhancement factor (AEF) of 9.35 × 108, the limit of detection (LOD) of 10−8 M, and the relative standard deviation (RSD) of 1.61% were better than the other SERS substrates fabricated by the same DC sputtering process because the results showed that the 6 nm thickness silver layer had the highest sensitivity, stability, and lifetime. The paraquat and acetylcholine analytes were further investigated and high sensitivity was also achievable. The proposed SERS samples were evaluated and stored in a low humidity environment for up to forty weeks, and no spectrum attenuation could be detected. Soon, the proposed technology to fabricate high sensitivity, repeatability, and robust SERS substrate will be an optimized process technology in multiple applications.

Original languageEnglish
Article number2742
Number of pages17
Issue number16
Publication statusPublished - 10 Aug 2022

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