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Opt Lett. 2009 Aug 1;34(15):2306-8.

Optofluidic particle concentration by a long-range dual-beam trap.

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  • 1School of Engineering, University of California Santa Cruz, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, California 95064, USA.


Ultrahigh sensitivity detection of particles in solution implies the ability to detect at very low concentrations. At the single-particle level, this is achieved through fluorescence detection, reaching down to single fluorophores. Sensitivity may also be improved by concentrating many particles into a compact cluster, thus "integrating" the signal of many particles. We show how both ways can be combined on an optofluidic chip in a fully planar geometry utilizing counterpropagating liquid-core waveguide modes to form a loss-based optical trap. This all-optical concentrator can increase the concentration of particles by more than 2 orders of magnitude and also provides a convenient, nondispersive means of transport for particle ensembles.

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