Articles

Investigation of the decomposition of organic solvent-based lithium ion battery electrolytes with liquid chromatography-mass spectrometry

LIB_28-5-sLithium ion batteries power most of the electrical devices we rely on every day. As well as mobile phones, laptops and tablets, they are finding increasing use in vehicles, with electric cars not uncommon on our streets. This article is from a young scientist who has won help for her research through an instrument company’s support programme. You can find out more, read the article and even apply yourself.

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Shedding light on medieval manuscripts

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It is not every issue that one of our articles starts with a quotation in medieval English, and it is appropriate as two of our articles cover the use of spectroscopy in cultural heritage. This is yet another field where the rich information provided by spectroscopy, along with its non-destructive nature (for many techniques), portability and ability to generate chemical images make it the answer to many questions. Kate Nicholson, Andrew Beeby and Richard Gameson are responsible for the medieval English at the start of their article “Shedding light on medieval manuscripts”. They describe the general use of Raman spectroscopy for the analysis of historical artefacts, and, in particular, their work on medieval European manuscripts and 18th century watercolour pigments. They stess the importance of checking the actual laser power density to avoid damage to priceless artefacts.

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The application of Fourier transform infrared, near infrared and X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy to soil analysis

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Jean Robertson, Charles Shand and Estefania Perez-Fernandez update us on the use of various spectroscopies for soil analysis in “The application of Fourier transform infrared, near infrared and X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy to soil analysis”. Once again developments in portable instruments lead to greater ease of use and the ability to measure far more samples. They describe the application of FT-IR, NIR and XRF spectroscopies to the development of the National Soils Inventory of Scotland, and their work in developing the use of handheld instruments, particularly FT-IR spectrometers.

Read more: The application of Fourier transform infrared, near infrared and X-ray fluorescence spectroscopy to soil analysis

   

TISCH—Terahertz Imaging and Spectroscopy in Cultural Heritage: applications in archaeology, architecture and art conservation science

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Returning to our cultural heritage theme, Bianca Jackson tells us about “TISCH—Terahertz Imaging and Spectroscopy in Cultural Heritage: applications in archaeology, architecture and art conservation science”. Terahertz spectroscopy and imaging of Paleolithic cave etchings, 14th century paintings in a church and a mid-20th century Italian painting are all described. This helps demonstrate the versatility of the technique as well as its potential in cultural heritage preservation.

Read more: TISCH—Terahertz Imaging and Spectroscopy in Cultural Heritage: applications in archaeology, architecture and art conservation science

   

Infrared spectroscopic techniques for the non-invasive and rapid quality control of Chinese traditional medicine Si-Wu-Tang

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Christian Huck and co-authors look at “Infrared spectroscopic techniques for the non-invasive and rapid quality control of Chinese traditional medicine Si-Wu-Tang”. They have used benchtop mid-IR and NIR as well as portable NIR instruments for quick and non-invasive quality control of this traditional Chinese medicine. Adulterations could be detected, as well as the raw herbs and different sources of the Si-Wu-Tang. The success of the mobile NIR instrument is particularly interesting due to the growing interest in such technology for its ease-of-use and cost.

Read more: Infrared spectroscopic techniques for the non-invasive and rapid quality control of Chinese traditional medicine Si-Wu-Tang

   

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