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Publication Date

Summer 2014

Degree Type

Thesis - Campus Access Only

Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)


Biomedical, Chemical & Materials Engineering


Guna Selvaduray


Nanofabrication, Nanofluidics, Nanoimprint Lithography, Optofluidics, Plasmonics

Subject Areas

Materials Science; Nanotechnology


Single molecule detection is limited by the small scattering cross-section of molecules which leads to weak optical signals that can be obscured by background noise. The combination of plasmonics and nanofluidics in an integrated nano-device has the potential to provide the signal enhancement necessary for the detection of single molecules. The purpose of this investigation was to optimize the fabrication of an optofluidic device that integrates a nanochannel with a plasmonic bowtie antenna. The fluidic structure of the device was fabricated using UV-nanoimprint lithography, and the gold plasmonic antennas were fabricated using a shadow evaporation and lift-off process. The effect of electron beam lithography doses on the resolution of antenna-nanochannel configurations was studied to minimize antenna gap size while maintaining the integrity of the imprinted features. The smallest antenna gap size that was achieved was 46 nm. The antennas were characterized using dark field spectroscopy to find the resonance shift, which indicated the appropriate range for optical signal enhancement. The dark field scattering results showed antennas with a broad and well-defined resonance shift that ranged from 650 - 800 nm. The Raman scattering results showed the highest enhancement factor (EF = 2) for antennas with an "inverted configuration," which involved having the triangles of the antenna facing back-to-back rather than the more conventional tip-to-tip bowtie arrangement.