Towards an: Integrated chip-scale plasmonic biosensor

Ryan M. Gelfand, Dibyendu Dey, John Kohoutek, Alireza Bonakdar, Soojung Claire Hur, Dino Di Carlo, Hooman Mohsen

Research output: Contribution to specialist publicationArticle


Biosensing allows researchers to detect tiny amounts of harmful chemicals, diagnose diseases and to identify biohazards in the environment. Since these compounds are usually proteins or other large biomolecules, they have very strong and unique vibrational characteristics in the 10 to 100 THz range. Optical energy that matches a natural molecular mode in this frequency range will be absorbed and converted into a mechanical vibration or rotation. Optical antennas can guide the signal to a spot that is orders of magnitude smaller than the operating wavelength and thereby in a sense overcome this limit. Finite difference time domain (FDTD) simulations are important to the understanding of many optical devices. This computation method provides researchers with the ability to test device designs and optimize those designs quickly, inexpensively and safely. Researchers are using advanced optical technologies to develop the biosensor of the future, a plasmonic-based chip-scale device that will allow for compact, inexpensive, ubiquitous and sensitive detection.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Number of pages6
Specialist publicationOptics and Photonics News
StatePublished - Apr 2011
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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