SF Bay Area Nanotechnology Council

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Fiber SERS Sensors for Molecular Detection

gu. claireMarch 19, 2013
Noon – 1  pm
Texas Instruments (TI) Auditorium E-1
2900 Semiconductor Drive
Santa Clara, CA

TITLE: Fiber SERS Sensors for Molecular Detection

SPEAKER: Dr. Claire Gu, Department of Electrical Engineering
University of California, Santa Cruz


Optical fibers have been successfully used in long-haul communication systems, endoscopy, and other optical systems to transmit optical power as well as information. In integrated sensor systems, optical fibers have been frequently employed to connect the source and the detector, due to their flexibility, compactness, and low loss. However, optical fibers can provide more functionalities than a simple transmission channel.

In this talk, we review our work on various optical fibers as platforms for molecular sensing based on surface enhanced Raman scattering (SERS). The fibers serve to significantly increase the sensitivity of SERS and to facilitate the integration of a compact sensor system. Specifically, three types of fiber SERS probes have been able to enhance the sensitivity of detection beyond that of direct detection: 1) liquid core photonic crystal fiber (LCPCF), 2) tip-coated multimode fiber (TCMMF) in conjunction with a second SERS substrate mixed with the analyte solution, and 3) nanopillar array fabricated on the tip of a multimode fiber. Integration of such fiber probes with a portable Raman spectrometer brings the SERS detection one step closer to practical applications. In this talk, we will discuss the principle of operation of various building blocks, demonstrate our recent results, and highlight some potential applications.

Claire Gu received her Ph.D. in Physics from Caltech in 1989. Then she worked as a member of the technical staff at Rockwell Science Center, and went to Penn State in 1992 as an assistant professor. In 1997, she came to UC Santa Cruz as the first Electrical Engineering faculty member, and is now a professor in EE. Her research interests include fiber optics, holographic data storage, liquid crystal displays, nonlinear optics, and optical information processing; with a current emphasis on fiber sensors using SERS (surface enhanced Raman scattering). She has published more than 200 journal and conference papers in these areas. In addition, she has co-authored a text/reference book on “Optics of Liquid Crystal Displays”, and co-edited two technical books on photorefractive nonlinear optics and applications. She received a National Science Foundation Young Investigator Award in 1993. From 2000 to 2006, she served as a Topical Editor of Optics Letters. She is a fellow of OSA (Optical Society of America) and SPIE (The International Society of Optical Engineering).


  • 11:30 am – Registration & light lunch (pizza & drinks)
  • Noon – Presentation & Questions/Answers
  • 1:00 pm - Adjourn
COST: IEEE Members: $5, Non-members:$10


Download a copy of the presentation.



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