Scientific Results

Quantitative readout of optically encoded gold nanorods using an ordinary dark-field microscope

Year: 2013

Authors: Mercatelli R., Ratto F., Centi S., Soria S., Romano G., Matteini P., Quercioli F., Pini R., Fusi F.

Autors Affiliation: INO-CNR, National Institute of Optics-CNR, Largo E. Fermi 6, Florence, Italy;
IFAC-CNR, Institute of Applied Physics-CNR, Via Madonna del Piano 10, Sesto Fiorentino, Firenze, Italy;
Department of Experimental and Clinical Biomedical Sciences, University of Florence, Viale Pieraccini 6, Florence, Italy

Abstract: In this paper we report on a new use for dark-field microscopy in order to retrieve two-dimensional maps of optical parameters of a thin sample such as a cryptograph, a histological section, or a cell monolayer. In particular, we discuss the construction of quantitative charts of light absorbance and scattering coefficients of a polyvinyl alcohol film that was embedded with gold nanorods and then etched using a focused mode-locked Ti:Sapphire oscillator. Individual pulses from this laser excite plasmonic oscillations of the gold nanorods, thus triggering plastic deformations of the particles and their environment, which are confined within a few hundred nm of the light focus. In turn, these deformations modify the light absorbance and scattering landscape, which can be measured with optical resolution in a dark-field microscope equipped with an objective of tuneable numerical aperture. This technique may prove to be valuable for various applications, such as the fast readout of optically encoded data or to model functional interactions between light and biological tissue at the level of cellular organelles, including the photothermolysis of cancer.

Journal/Review: NANOSCALE

Volume: 5 (20)      Pages from: 9645  to: 9650

KeyWords: nanorods; nonlinear microscopy;
DOI: 10.1039/c3nr00726j

Citations: 15
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English