To increase the accessibility of methods for characterizing microparticles via Raman spectroscopy, we created two spectral libraries that are representative of microplastics found in environmental samples. Here, we present SLoPP, a spectral library of plastic particles, consisting of 148 reference spectra, including a diversity of polymer types, colors, and morphologies. To account for the effects of aging on microplastics and associated changes to Raman spectra, we present a spectral library of plastic particles aged in the environment (SLoPP-E). SLoPP-E includes 113 spectra, including a diversity of types, colors, and morphologies. The microplastics used to make SLoPP-E include environmental samples obtained across a range of matrices, geographies, and time. Our libraries increase the likelihood of spectral matching for a broad range of microplastics because our libraries include plastics containing a range of additives and pigments that are not generally included in commercial libraries. These tools were developed to improve the accessibility of microplastics research in response to a growing and multidisciplinary field, as well as to enhance data quality and consistency.
Library curated by: Keenan MunnoϮ, Hannah De Frond, Bridget O’Donnell and Chelsea Rochman