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Dielectrophoretic immobilisation of nanoparticles as isolated singles in regular arrays

: Knigge, X.; Wenger, C.; Bier, F.F.; Hölzel, R.


Journal of Physics. D. Applied Physics 51 (2018), No.6, Art. 065308, 11 pp.
ISSN: 0022-3727
ISSN: 1361-6463
Journal Article
Fraunhofer IZI ()

We demonstrate the immobilisation of polystyrene nanoparticles on vertical nano-electrodes by means of dielectrophoresis. The electrodes have diameters of 500 nm or 50 nm, respectively, and are arranged in arrays of several thousand electrodes, allowing many thousands of experiments in parallel. At a frequency of 15 kHz, which is found favourable for polystyrene, several occupation patterns are observed, and both temporary and permanent immobilisation is achieved. In addition, a histogram method is applied, which allows to determine the number of particles occupying the electrodes. These results are validated with scanning electron microscopy images. Immobilising exactly one particle at each electrode tip is achieved for electrode tip diameters with half the particle size. Extension of this system down to the level of single molecules is envisaged, which will avoid ensemble averaging at still statistically large sample sizes.