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Hotspot generation for unique identification with nanomaterials

Abdelazim, Nema M., Fong, Matthew J., McGrath, Thomas, Woodhead, Christopher S. ORCID:, Al-Saymari, Furat, Bagci, Ibrahim E., Jones, Alex T., Wang, Xintai and Young, Robert J. 2021. Hotspot generation for unique identification with nanomaterials. Scientific Reports 11 , 1528. 10.1038/s41598-020-79644-w

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Nanoscale variations in the structure and composition of an object are an enticing basis for verifying its identity, due to the physical complexity of attempting to reproduce such a system. The biggest practical challenge for nanoscale authentication lies in producing a system that can be assessed with a facile measurement. Here, a system is presented in which InP/ZnS quantum dots are randomly distributed on a surface of aluminium coated with gold nanoparticles (NPs). Variations in the local arrangement of the QDs and NPs is shown to lead to interactions between them, which can suppress or enhance fluorescence from the QDs. This position-dependent interaction can be mapped, allowing intensity, emission dynamics, and/or wavelength variations to be used to uniquely identify a specific sample at the nanoscale with a far-field optical measurement. This demonstration could pave the way to producing robust anti-counterfeiting devices.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Physics and Astronomy
Publisher: Nature Publishing Group
ISSN: 2045-2322
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 12 May 2021
Date of Acceptance: 30 November 2020
Last Modified: 05 May 2023 07:23

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