The sun is our most important natural light source. Light can also be generated artificially, traditionally with fire, but since the 19th century also been with incandescent lamps; later, other types were developed, such as sulfur plasma lamps and LEDs (light-emitting diodes).

So what is spectroscopy? Spectroscopy is the study of the absorption and emission of light and other radiation by matter. It involves the splitting of light (or more precisely, electromagnetic radiation) into its constituent wavelengths (a spectrum), which is done in much the same way as a prism splits light into a rainbow of colors.

The term ‘spectroscopy‘ defines a large number of techniques that use radiation to obtain information on the structure and properties of matter. The basic principle shared by all spectroscopic techniques is to shine a beam of electromagnetic radiation onto a sample and observe how it responds to such a stimulus.

Below you can find some examples where spectroscopy is used to reveal specific information.