Optical investigations on nanoparticles and photonic nanostructures with and without functional organic molecules

The aims of the project are the generation and application of field
enhancements at metallic nanostructures for sensitive spectroscopy of
adsorbed molecules, or functional groups.  The metallic nanoparticles
are fabricated using the nanosphere lithography technique, eventually
combined with micellar methods.  Using core-shell spheres,
metallo-dielectric structures will be fabricated using embossing and
etching techniques.

The optical properties of these metallic nanostructures will be
investigated by scanning confocal and scanning near-field optical
microscopy (SNOM). With confocal microscopy the scattering fields will
be measured for different illumination setups, while with SNOM the
non-radiative near-fields will be probed. The spectroscopic sensitivity of
the nanoparticles and metallo-dielectric nanostructures decorated with
functional molecules, from other SFB-569 projects, will be
investigated using techniques as confocal Raman microscopy.