KSEF R&D Excellence:Nano-size Particle Characterization via Elliptically Polarized Surface Wave Scattering

  • Menguc, M (PI)
  • Aslan, Mustafa (CoI)

Grants and Contracts Details


Nanoparticles are the building blocks of the nanotechnology revolution, which is likely to have a significant impact on the world we live in coming years. Measurements of the size and size distribution of these particles are crucial for controlled and precise processes. Even though there are different ways of measuring the size/size distribution of these small particles, none of the available approaches, including TEM, SEM, HRTEM, AFM, are easy to use or inexpensive. In addition, they are usually off-line techniques. There is definitely a need for inexpensive, on-line measurement techniques, preferably based on visible light. In addition, the nanoparticles are much smaller in size than the wavelength of visible radiation, which results poor sensitivity and precision if the traditional light scattering approaches are used to characterize them. The proposed project is to develop a novel characterization modality for nanoparticles. We are planning to use surface waves and record the angular scattering profiles for different elliptically polarized settings of both the incident and scattered/reflected beams. The use of elliptically polarized light along with the spatially-selective scattering to be accomplished via surface waves is quite promising and increases the sensitivity of the detection. Therefore, this approach is well suited for the characterization of nano-size particles. Currently, a patent application is being prepared on this concept, which will be submitted to the University of Kentucky for consideration. The proposed emerging idea proposal focuses on preliminary experiments necessary to show that 1) elliptically-polarized light scattering concept coupled with surface wave scattering approach yields a very fine particle characterization modality. with resolution as small as 10 nm: 2) that it is possible to build such a sensitive unit inexpensively: and 3) that such a system can be built in a very robust fashion for on-line characterization applications.
Effective start/end date7/1/036/30/04


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