Use of Plasmonic and Photonic Structures to Enhance Optical Trapping

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My PhD projects involves the design and fabrication of plasmonic and photonic devices to produce highly localised optical fields and enhance the efficiencies of optical trapping systems. The Design stage is done using Finite-Difference Time-Domain (FDTD) method and the fabrication process will involve electron beam lithography (EBL) as well as Focus Ion Beam (FIB).

Optical tweezers allow trapping, manipulation and localized measurement of nano and micron sized particles in three dimensions. They have a broad range of applications in various fields such as spectroscopy, molecular biology, chemistry, molecular physics and material science. It is difficult to trap and manipulate nano sized dielectric objects with conventional optical traps. They have relatively high cost and complexity and they may also cause photo damage to the specimens and their solution. The enhanced optical traps will be designed and fabricated to meet these limitations and also to tailor specific functionalities to the optical trapping system.