Map of the Month | November | Edinburgh Instruments

Map of the Month - November

Welcome to Edinburgh Instruments’ newest blog celebrating our work in Raman, Photoluminescence, and Fluorescence Lifetime Imaging. Every month we will highlight our pick for Map of the Month to show how our spectrometers can be used to reveal all the hidden secrets in your samples.


To the human eye a fingerprint is nothing more than a fingerprint – but place it under a microscope and suddenly things get a bit more interesting. We can now see deposits of small particles over the fingerprint, shown in red on this Raman map. These particles indicate what the person who was responsible for the fingerprint had last touched. The microscope has done its job in allowing the investigator to see the trace particles present, now the spectroscopic identification comes in to play. Thanks to Raman spectroscopy’s fingerprint-like chemical identification, the Raman spectrum from these particles can easily be identified as paracetamol, by comparing against a library of known drug spectra.

This is just one way Raman microscopy is a great tool for forensic laboratories. Find out more.