DOI: 10.3390/nano13172401 ISSN:

Amplitude-Resolved Single Particle Spectrophotometry: A Robust Tool for High-Throughput Size Characterization of Plasmonic Nanoparticles

Rodrigo Calvo, Valerio Pini, Andreas Thon, Asis Saad, Antonio Salvador-Matar, Miguel Manso Silván, Óscar Ahumada
  • General Materials Science
  • General Chemical Engineering

Plasmonic nanoparticles have a wide range of applications in science and industry. Despite the numerous synthesis methods reported in the literature over the last decades, achieving precise control over the size and shape of large nanoparticle populations remains a challenge. Since variations in size and shape significantly affect the plasmonic properties of nanoparticles, accurate metrological techniques to characterize their morphological features are essential. Here, we present a novel spectrophotometric method, called Amplitude-Resolved Single Particle Spectrophotometry, that can measure the individual sizes of thousands of particles with nanometric accuracy in just a few minutes. This new method, based on the measurement of the scattering amplitude of each nanoparticle, overcomes some of the limitations observed in previous works and theoretically allows the characterization of nanoparticles of any size with a simple extra calibration step. As proof of concept, we characterized thousands of spherical nanoparticles of different sizes. This new method shows excellent accuracy, with less than a 3% discrepancy in direct comparison with transmission electron microscopy. Although the effectiveness of this method has been demonstrated with spherical nanoparticles, its real strength lies in its adaptability to more complex geometries by using an alternative analytical method to the one described here.

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