Super-resolution chemical imaging with dynamic placement of plasmonic hotspots
We demonstrate dynamic placement of plasmonic "hotspots" for super-resolution chemical imaging via Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS). A silver nanohole array surface was coated with biological samples and illuminated with a laser. Due to the large plasmonic field enhancements, blinking behavior of the SERS hotspots was observed and processed using a Stochastic Optical Reconstruction Microscopy (STORM) algorithm enabling localization to within 10 nm. However, illumination of the sample with a single static laser beam (i.e., a slightly defocused Gaussian beam) only produced SERS hotspots in fixed locations on the surface, leaving noticeable gaps in any final image. But, by using a spatial light modulator (SLM), the illumination profile of the beam could be altered, shifting any hotspots across the nanohole array surface in sub-wavelength steps. Therefore, by properly structuring an illuminating light field with the SLM, we show the possibility of positioning plasmonic hotspots over a metallic nanohole surface on-the-fly. Using this and our SERS-STORM imaging technique, we show potential for high-resolution chemical imaging without the noticeable gaps that were present with static laser illumination. Interestingly, even illuminating the surface with randomly shifting SLM phase profiles was sufficient to completely fill in a wide field of view for super-resolution SERS imaging of a single strand of 100-nm thick collagen protein fibrils. Images were then compared to those obtained with a scanning electron microscope (SEM). Additionally, we explored alternative methods of phase shifting other than holographic illumination through the SLM to create localization of hotspots necessary for SERS-STORM imaging.
Proceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
Olson, Aeli P.; Ertsgaard, Christopher T.; McKoskey, Rachel M.; Rich, Isabel S.; and Lindquist, Nathan C., "Super-resolution chemical imaging with dynamic placement of plasmonic hotspots" (2015). Physics and Engineering Faculty Publications. 21.