FTIR Spectroscopy and Microscopy

Fourier-transform infrared (FTIR) spectroscopy is a method for identifying the chemistry and structure of a material.  FTIR works by measuring the infrared light absorption properties of molecules.  Each functional group in a molecule, such as an alcohol or carboxylic acid, absorbs infrared light at different frequencies.  Every molecule has a unique fingerprint of infrared absorption bands, and that allows us to identify the different molecules present in a test specimen.  FTIR spectroscopy can also measure chemical changes in polymers and plastics, such as degradation, oxidation, or crosslinking.

Bruker Lumos FTIR microscope

Veryst measures FTIR spectra with our Bruker Lumos FTIR microscope. FTIR microscopy allows us to make local measurements of FTIR spectra and to map material composition across the geometry of a device. Veryst uses FTIR microscopy for:

  • identifying organic materials and chemical impurities for failure analysis and forensic investigations
  • analyzing environmental degradation of polymers
  • developing and executing accelerated aging protocols
  • characterizing curing kinetics of thermal and UV-curing adhesives
  • mapping interdiffusion of polymer interfaces
  • establishing structure-property relationships in organic materials.



Veryst uses FTIR spectroscopy to identify polymer degradation.  In this example, the heat-damaged epoxy has absorbance peaks for alcohols and carbonyls, as indicated by arrows, while the un-damaged epoxy does not.  The presence of these peaks demonstrates that the degradation mechanism is oxidation, commonly observed in plastics exposed to heat or corrosive environments.

FTIR Spectroscopy example



Veryst uses FTIR microscopy to measure material composition with spatial resolution as low as 10 µm. 

In this example of a solvent weld between ABS and PVC, Veryst determined that the diffusion zone is primarily on the ABS side of the interface.


FTIR Microscopy

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FTIR Microscopy Analysis of Thermoplastic Solvent Bonding

Solvent bonding, although an effective way to join thermoplastics, can pose process challenges that reduce bond strength. Veryst uses FTIR microscopy to characterize the interface structure of solvent bonds, obtaining a “chemical image” of the solvent-bonded interface. The result is a full understanding of the bond and ways to improve its strength and reliability.

Underfill Adhesive Flow and Cure

The microelectronics packaging industry relies heavily on adhesive bonding to assemble electronic components. Veryst built a COMSOL Multiphysics model of a thermocompression bonding process to help reduce bonding cycle time by simultaneously optimizing material and process variables.

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