Spectroscopy is the use of the absorption, emission, or scattering of electromagnetic
radiation by matter to qualitatively or quantitatively study the matter
or to study physical processes. The matter can be atoms, molecules, atomic
or molecular ions, or solids. The interaction of radiation with matter
can cause redirection of the radiation and/or transitions between the energy
levels of the atoms or molecules.
Absorption: A transition from a lower level
to a higher level with transfer of energy from the radiation field to an
absorber, atom, molecule, or solid.
Emission: A transition from a higher level to
a lower level with transfer of energy from the emitter to the radiation
field. If no radiation is emitted, the transition from higher to lower
energy levels is called nonradiative decay.
Scattering: Redirection of light due to its
interaction with matter. Scattering might or might not occur with a transfer
of energy, i.e., the scattered radiation might or might not have a slightly
different wavelength compared to the light incident on the sample.
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