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Title: A method to determine the number of nanoparticles in a cluster using conventional optical microscopes

We present a method that uses conventional optical microscopes to determine the number of nanoparticles in a cluster, which is typically not possible using traditional image-based optical methods due to the diffraction limit. The method, called through-focus scanning optical microscopy (TSOM), uses a series of optical images taken at varying focus levels to achieve this. The optical images cannot directly resolve the individual nanoparticles, but contain information related to the number of particles. The TSOM method makes use of this information to determine the number of nanoparticles in a cluster. Initial good agreement between the simulations and the measurements is also presented. The TSOM method can be applied to fluorescent and non-fluorescent as well as metallic and non-metallic nano-scale materials, including soft materials, making it attractive for tag-less, high-speed, optical analysis of nanoparticles down to 45 nm diameter.
Authors:
; ; ; ;  [1]
  1. Semiconductor and Dimensional Metrology Division, PML, NIST, Gaithersburg, Maryland 20899 (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
22482049
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Applied Physics Letters; Journal Volume: 107; Journal Issue: 10; Other Information: (c) 2015 U.S. Government; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
71 CLASSICAL AND QUANTUM MECHANICS, GENERAL PHYSICS; DIFFRACTION; FLUORESCENCE; IMAGES; INFORMATION; NANOPARTICLES; OPTICAL MICROSCOPES; SCANNING LIGHT MICROSCOPY; SIMULATION; VELOCITY