The process of engineering, controlling and fabricating structures of 1-100 nanometers in size, which defines “nanoscale,” is a challenging endeavor. The unusual characteristics of such particles are due to their small sizes and high percentage of atoms in surface states, which yield unique properties that differ from those of the same bulk materials. Particularly, nanosize metallic particles and colloids can give rise to many unprecedented optical, electronic, and structural properties. With these new properties, these particles can be used for many novel and innovative engineering and biological applications. However, manufacturing of these nanosize building blocks requires careful control of their composition, structure, shape, and size distribution, which necessitates further understanding of the underlying physics and chemistry. This would be possible if these particles can be visualized and measured in real time and non-intrusively. Recently, a new characterization methodology has been developed by the PI and his group using scattering of elliptically polarized evanescent waves by particles on a smooth surface. These surface waves can also be employed to manipulate particles. Again recently, the PI and his colleagues reported a novel directed self-assembly process to melt and fuse metallic of such particles. The objective of the current proposal is to advance both of these approaches to the next level by understanding the influence of near-field effects on absorption, emission and scattering by nanoparticles, coagulates and surfaces in close proximity to each other. It is expected that a successful implementation of this research program will significantly help to the development of future nanomanufacturing platforms. The Marie Curie International Reintegration Project will help the PI to seamlessly transfer the knowledge base he has developed at the University of Kentucky in Lexington, Kentucky, USA, to Ozyegin University, in Istanbul Turkey.
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