LSPR Coupling and Distribution of Interparticle Distances between Nanoparticles in Hydrogel on Optical Fiber End Face
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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We report on a new localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR)-based optical fiber (OF) architecture with a potential in sensor applications. The LSPR-OF system is fabricated by immobilizing gold nanoparticles (GNPs) in a hydrogel droplet polymerized on the fiber end face. This design has several advantages over earlier designs. It dramatically increase the number nanoparticles (NP) available for sensing, it offers precise control over the NP density, and the NPs are positioned in a true 3D aqueous environment. The OF-hydrogel design is also compatible with low-cost manufacturing. The LSPR-OF platform can measure volumetric changes in a stimuli-responsive hydrogel or measure binding to receptors on the NP surface. It can also be used as a two-parameter sensor by utilizing both effects. We present results from proof-of-concept experiments exploring the properties of LSPR and interparticle distances of the GNP-hydrogel OF design by characterizing the distribution of distances between NPs in the hydrogel, the refractive index of the hydrogel and the LSPR attributes of peak position, amplitude and linewidth for hydrogel deswelling controlled with pH solutions.