Rapid, quantitative SERS analysis of nicotine at ppm/ppb levels has been carried out using stable and inexpensive polymer-encapsulated Ag nanoparticles (gel-colls). The strongest nicotine band (1030 cm(-1)) was measured against d(5)-pyridine internal standard (974 cm(-1)) which was introduced during preparation of the stock gel-colls. Calibration plots of I-nic/I-pyr against the concentration of nicotine were non-linear but plotting I-nic/I-pyr against [nicotine](x) (x = 0.6-0.75, depending on the exact experimental conditions) gave linear calibrations over the range (0.1-10 ppm) with R-2 typically ca. 0.998. The RMS prediction error was found to be 0.10 ppm when the gel-colls were used for quantitative determination of unknown nicotine samples in 1-5 ppm level. The main advantages of the method are that the gel-colls constitute a highly stable and reproducible SERS medium that allows high throughput (50 sample h(-1)) measurements.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Analytical Chemistry