Nanostructures supporting plasmons for biosensors

Petermann I.
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This thesis investigates the properties of gold nanostructures prepared by nanosphere coating, nanosphere lithography and fractal aggregation and compares these methods regarding suitability as signal amplifiers in a proposed biosensor that is based on localized surface plasmon enhancement of fluorescent reporter molecules.

The experimental work includes definition of a procedure to fixate the nanostructures to a silica substrate via the linker molecule (3-mercaptopropyl)trimethoxysilane and evaluation of these structures by light microscopy, scanning electron microscopy and Raman spectroscopy. While no definite recommendation on which structure to use can be made from the experiments at this point, it is concluded that while the fractal aggregates have promising features, the nanosphere coating approach may present a least-effort path to achieve the wanted enhancing effect due to its simplicity if it can be shown to harbour suitable geometries. A possible work plan to arrive at a final recommendation is finally suggested.

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Bachelor thesis in medical science with a major in biomedicine, Karolinska Institutet (Stockholm/Sydney, August 2011).