Spectrally resolved measurements of optical activity, such as circular dichroism (CD) and optical rotatory dispersion (ORD), are powerful tools to study chiroptical properties of (bio)molecular and nanoplasmonic systems. The wider utilization of these techniques, however, has been impeded by the bulky and slow design of conventional spectropolarimeters, which have been limited to a narrowband scanning approach for more than 50 years. In this work, we demonstrate broadband measurements of optical activity by combining a balanced detection scheme with interferometric Fourier-transform spectroscopy. The setup utilizes a linearly polarized light field that creates an orthogonally polarized weak chiral free-induction-decay field, along with a phase-locked achiral transmitted signal, which serves as the local oscillator for heterodyne amplification. By scanning the delay between the two fields with a birefringent common-path interferometer and recording their interferogram with a balanced detector that measures polarization rotation, broadband CD and ORD spectra are retrieved simultaneously with a Fourier transform. Using an incoherent thermal light source, we achieve state-of-the-art sensitivity for CD and ORD across a broad wavelength range in a remarkably simple setup. We further demonstrate the potential of our technique for highly sensitive measurements of glucose concentration and the real-time monitoring of ground-state chemical reactions. The setup also accepts broadband pulses and will be suitable for broadband transient optical activity spectroscopy and broadband optical activity imaging.

Broadband Optical Activity Spectroscopy with Interferometric Fourier-Transform Balanced Detection

Ghosh S.;Herink G.;Perri A.;Preda F.;Manzoni C.;Polli D.;Cerullo G.
2021

Abstract

Spectrally resolved measurements of optical activity, such as circular dichroism (CD) and optical rotatory dispersion (ORD), are powerful tools to study chiroptical properties of (bio)molecular and nanoplasmonic systems. The wider utilization of these techniques, however, has been impeded by the bulky and slow design of conventional spectropolarimeters, which have been limited to a narrowband scanning approach for more than 50 years. In this work, we demonstrate broadband measurements of optical activity by combining a balanced detection scheme with interferometric Fourier-transform spectroscopy. The setup utilizes a linearly polarized light field that creates an orthogonally polarized weak chiral free-induction-decay field, along with a phase-locked achiral transmitted signal, which serves as the local oscillator for heterodyne amplification. By scanning the delay between the two fields with a birefringent common-path interferometer and recording their interferogram with a balanced detector that measures polarization rotation, broadband CD and ORD spectra are retrieved simultaneously with a Fourier transform. Using an incoherent thermal light source, we achieve state-of-the-art sensitivity for CD and ORD across a broad wavelength range in a remarkably simple setup. We further demonstrate the potential of our technique for highly sensitive measurements of glucose concentration and the real-time monitoring of ground-state chemical reactions. The setup also accepts broadband pulses and will be suitable for broadband transient optical activity spectroscopy and broadband optical activity imaging.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: http://hdl.handle.net/11311/1207409
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