Counting molecules with a mobile phone camera using plasmonic enhancement

Date
2014
Authors
Ayas S.
Cupallari, A.
Ekiz, O. O.
Kaya, Y.
Dana, A.
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Source Title
ACS Photonics
Print ISSN
2330-4022
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Publisher
American Chemical Society
Volume
1
Issue
1
Pages
17 - 26
Language
English
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Abstract

Plasmonic field enhancement enables the acquisition of Raman spectra at a single molecule level. Here we investigate the detection of surface enhanced Raman signal using the unmodified image sensor of a smart phone, integrated onto a confocal Raman system. The sensitivity of a contemporary smart phone camera is compared to a photomultiplier and a cooled charge-coupled device. The camera displays a remarkably high sensitivity, enabling the observation of the weak unenhanced Raman scattering signal from a silicon surface, as well as from liquids, such as ethanol. Using high performance wide area plasmonic substrates that enhance the Raman signal 106 to 107 times, blink events typically associated with single molecule motion, are observed on the smart phone camera. Raman spectra can also be collected on the smart phone by converting the camera into a low resolution spectrometer with the inclusion of a collimator and a dispersive optical element in front of the camera. In this way, spectral content of the blink events can be observed on the plasmonic substrate, in real time, at 30 frames per second. (Figure Presented) © 2013 American Chemical Society.

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Published Version (Please cite this version)