Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)

Legacy Department


Committee Chair/Advisor

Chumanov, George

Committee Member

Christinson , Ken

Committee Member

Pennington , William

Committee Member

Creager , Stephen


The field of nanotechnology is rapidly expanding across disciplines as each new development is realized. New exciting technologies are being driven by advances in the application of nanotechnology; including biochemical, optical, and semiconductors research. This thesis will focus on the use of silver nanoparticles as optical labels on cells, methods of forming different small structures of silver nanoparticles, as well as the use of silver nanoparticles in the development of a photovoltaic cell.
Silver nanoparticles have been modified with self-assembled monolayers of hydroxyl-terminated long chain thiols and encapsulated with a silica shell. The resulting core-shell nanoparticles were used as optical labels for cell analysis using flow cytometry and microscopy. The excitation of plasmon resonances in nanoparticles results in strong depolarized scattering of visible light permitting detection at the single nanoparticle level. The nanoparticles were modified with neutravidin via epoxide-azide coupling chemistry and biotinylated antibodies targeting cell surface receptors were bound to the nanoparticle surface. The nanoparticle labels exhibited long-term stability under physiological conditions without aggregation or silver ion leaching. Labeled cells exhibited two orders of magnitude enhancement of the scattering intensity compared to unlabeled cells.
Dimers of silver nanoparticles have been fabricated by first immobilizing a monolayer of single silver nanoparticles onto poly(4-vinylpyridine) covered glass slides. The monolayer was then exposed to adenine, which has two amines which will bind to silver. The nanoparticle monolayer, now modified with adenine, is exposed to a second suspension of nanoparticles which will bind with the amine modified monolayer. Finally, a thin silica shell is formed about the structure via solgel chemistry to prevent dissolution or aggregation upon sonication/striping.
Circular arrays of silver nanoparticels are developed using a template base self assembly. A 1.5 micron silica sphere is bound to poly(4-vinylpyridine) coated glass and used as a template. a mask of silica monoxide is vacuum deposited atop the spheres/glass leaving a ring just below the sphere untouched and able to bind silver nanoparticles. Optical microscopy reveal interesting results under depolarized light conditions, but ultimate structural analysis has proven elusive.
Semiconducting p-type cuprous oxide was electrochemically deposited on both silver and indium tin oxide electrodes. Silver nanoparticles were incorporated into the architecture either atop the cuprous oxide or sandwiched between cuprous oxide and n-type material. Increases in photocurrent were observed in both cases and further work must be conducted to optimize a solid state device for photovoltaic applications.

Included in

Chemistry Commons



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