In this work, the contributions of cationic and elemental gold on roughened gold substrates to surface-enhanced Raman scattering (SERS) of polypyrrole (PPy) films were first investigated. First, a gold substrate was roughened by a triangular wave oxidation-reduction cycle (ORC) in an aqueous solution containing 0.1 M KCl. Then, the roughened gold substrate was further reduced by applying a cathodic potential for a fixed time to control the quantity of unreduced cationic Au on the roughened Au substrate. The result indicates that the content of cationic Au is responsible for the improved SERS of PPy electrodeposited on this roughened Au substrate. This phenomenon can be attributed to the interfacial charge transfer from PPy to the roughened Au substrate by the aid of cationic Au.
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