The direct observation of nanoscale objects is a challenging task for optical microscopy because the scattering from an individual nanoparticle is typically weak at optical wavelengths. Electron microscopy therefore remains one of the gold standard visualization methods for nanoparticles, despite its high cost, limited throughput and restricted field-of-view. Here, we describe a high-throughput, on-chip detection scheme that uses biocompatible wetting films to self-assemble aspheric liquid nanolenses around individual nanoparticles to enhance the contrast between the scattered and background light. We model the effect of the nanolens as a spatial phase mask centred on the particle and show that the holographic diffraction pattern of this effective phase mask allows detection of sub-100 nm particles across a large field-of-view of >20 mm2. As a proof-of-concept demonstration, we report on-chip detection of individual polystyrene nanoparticles, adenoviruses and influenza A (H1N1) viral particles.
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Ozcan Research Lab acknowledges the support of the Army Research Office Young Investigator Award, the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), an NSF CAREER Award, an Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Award and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's New Innovator Award (DP2OD006427) from the Office of The Director, NIH. The work at CEA-Leti was supported by the Carnot Institutes Network. The authors thank Hangfei Qi and Ren Sun of UCLA for H1N1 and adenovirus specimens.
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Mudanyali, O., McLeod, E., Luo, W. et al. Wide-field optical detection of nanoparticles using on-chip microscopy and self-assembled nanolenses. Nature Photon 7, 247–254 (2013). https://doi.org/10.1038/nphoton.2012.337
Communications Chemistry (2021)
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