Fluorescence is a widely used transduction mechanism in bio-imaging, sensing or physical chemistry characterization applications. The ability to selectively excite desired molecules without generating considerable bulk background from nearby molecules is very important for all these applications. A near field excitation using an exponentially decaying evanescent field is often used to reduce the bulk background by selectively exciting molecules near to the surface. We propose an on-chip platform to improve the surface and bulk fluorescence separation by combining near-field excitation and near-field collection. We used the exponentially decaying evanescent tail of a Silicon Nitride rib waveguide to excite molecules and coupled the subsequent emission back via the same waveguide. We observe from the finite difference time domain simulation that both the excitation and coupling efficiency depend exponentially on the surface-molecule distance. Thus, combination of near field excitation and collection improves surface-bulk separation. A reduction by half in effective 1/e decay length was found experimentally for this combined near-field excitation and collection technique compare to the conventional only near-field excitation based technique .
An analytical model is derived to find the optimum device efficiency for bio-sensing applications and established a general condition for sensor length to maximize the device efficiency and validated by experimental data.
Finally, we used this platform for Fluorescence Correlation Spectroscopy and steady-state fluorescence anisotropy measurement.
In this talk, I will present the fabrication, characterization and experimental results obtained using this proposed waveguide based platform.
Md. Mahmud-Ul-Hasan, Pieter Neutens, Liesbet Lagae, and Pol Van Dorpe, "On-chip near field fluorescence excitation and detection with nanophotonic waveguides for enhanced surface sensitivity (Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 10077, Nanoscale Imaging, Sensing, and Actuation for Biomedical Applications XIV, 1007702 (Presented at SPIE BiOS: January 30, 2017; Published: 24 April 2017); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2250963.5381802514001.
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