In the near future, single-molecule surface-enhanced Raman spectroscopy (SERS) is expected to expand the family of popular analytical tools for single-molecule characterization. We provide a roadmap for achieving single molecule SERS through different enhancement strategies for diverse applications. We introduce some characteristic features related to single-molecule SERS, such as Raman enhancement factor, intensity fluctuation, and data analysis. We then review recent strategies for enhancing the Raman signal intensities of single molecules, including electromagnetic enhancement, chemical enhancement, and resonance enhancement strategies. To demonstrate the utility of single-molecule SERS in practical applications, we present several examples of its use in various fields, including catalysis, imaging, and nanoelectronics. Finally, we specify current challenges in the development of single-molecule SERS and propose corresponding solutions..
Terahertz (THz) wave generation from laser-induced air plasma generally requires a short temporal laser pulse. In contrast, it was observed that THz radiation from ionized liquid water prefers a longer pulse, wherein the mechanism remains unclear. We attribute the preference for longer pulse duration to the process of ionization and plasma formation in water, which is supported by a numerical simulation result showing that the highest electron density is achieved with a subpicosecond pulse. The explanation is further verified by the coincidence of our experimental result and simulation when the thickness of the water is varied. Other liquids are also tested to assure the preference for such a pulse is not exclusive to water..
About the Cover
The image on the cover of Advanced Photonics Volume 2, Issue 1, demonstrates the principle of compressed ultrafast photography via image encoding and decoding. The dynamic scene (shock wave) is spatially encoded by DMD and temporally sheared by streak camera, which is recovered through compressed sensing algorithm with high imaging speed of trillion frames per second. Provided by S. Zhang et al., a team of researchers from East China Normal University, the image is based on the research presented in their article, “Single-shot compressed ultrafast photography: a review”.