Quantification of Oceanic Organic Composition through Vibrational Spectroscopy

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The ocean is comprised of a complex mixture of molecules, and It's not always clear the identity of the components or their concentrations. Revealing the molecular identity and concentrations can help us understand the impact these molecules have on the ocean and the environment; therefore, it is necessary to find fast and reliable methods to identify these components and concentrations. Vibrational spectroscopy which measures the vibrational motion of bonds within compounds has been an invaluable tool in analyzing unknown compounds because it can identify essential properties of molecules including structural information. In our study, Attenuated Total Reflectance Fourier-Transform Infrared (ATR-FTIR) vibrational spectroscopy was used to investigate samples of glucose and egg serum albumin (ESA) which are representative compounds of organics that can be found in the ocean. Analysis of the variation within the spectroscopy data was completed. Additionally, we attempted to augment the data interpretation process using machine learning models that can be trained to differentiate data sets. Accuracy data of the machine learning predictions were also analyzed.