Errors in Spectral Interpretation Caused by Sample-Preparation Artifacts and FT-IR Hardware Problems
Modern Fourier-transform and microprocessor-controlled infrared spectrometers make it easy to obtain an infrared spectrum perhaps too easy! Previous-generation infrared spectrometers were often big, expensive, slow, and temperamental; successful operation of these systems frequently required a judicious mixture of science, engineering, and art. In the present chapter, specific examples are presented to illustrate some of the spectral distortion and/or misinterpretation problems cited in this introduction. With this information, the spectroscopist is much less likely to misinterpret a sample-preparation artifact. This chapter discusses some of the common problems in sample preparation and the interpretation of data containing sample-preparation or other spectral artifacts which the author has personally encountered during almost 20 years of industrial spectroscopy.