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TitleElectron Tomography of Plasmonic Au Nanoparticles Dispersed in a TiO2 Dielectric Matrix
Author(s)Koneti, Siddardha
Borges, Joel Nuno Pinto
Roiban, Lucian
Rodrigues, Marco S.
Martin, Nicolas
Epicier, Thierry
Vaz, F.
Steyer, Philippe
KeywordsThin films
Reactive magnetron sputtering
Au nanoparticles
TiO2 matrix
Localized surface plasmon resonance
STEM (scanning transmission electron microscopy)
Electron tomography
TiO matrix 2
Issue date12-Dec-2018
PublisherAmerican Chemical Society
JournalACS Applied Materials & Interfaces
CitationKoneti, S., Borges, J., Roiban, L., et. al. (2018). Electron tomography of plasmonic Au nanoparticles dispersed in a TiO2 dielectric matrix. ACS applied materials & interfaces, 10(49), 42882-42890
Abstract(s)Plasmonic Au nanoparticles (AuNPs) embedded into a TiO2 dielectric matrix were analyzed by combining two-dimensional and three-dimensional electron microscopy techniques. The preparation method was reactive magnetron sputtering, followed by thermal annealing treatments at 400 and 600 degrees C. The goal was to assess the nanostructural characteristics and correlate them with the optical properties of the AuNPs, particularly the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) behavior. High-angle annular dark field scanning transmission electron microscopy results showed the presence of small-sized AuNPs (quantum size regime) in the as-deposited Au-TiO2 film, resulting in a negligible LSPR response. The in-vacuum thermal annealing at 400 degrees C induced the formation of intermediate-sized nanoparticles (NPs), in the range of 10-40 nm, which led to the appearance of a well-defined LSPR band, positioned at 636 nm. Electron tomography revealed that most of the NPs are small-sized and are embedded into the TiO2 matrix, whereas the larger NPs are located at the surface. Annealing at 600 degrees C promotes a bimodal size distribution with intermediate-sized NPs embedded in the matrix and big sized NPs, up to 100 nm, appearing at the surface. The latter are responsible for a broadening and a redshift, to 645 nm, in the LSPR band because of increase of scattering-to-absorption ratio. Beyond differentiating and quantifying the surface and embedded NPs, electron tomography also provided the identification of "hot-spots". The presence of NPs at the surface, individual or in dimers, permits adsorption sites for LSPR sensing and for surface-enhanced spectroscopies, such as surface enhanced Raman scattering.
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Appears in Collections:CDF - GRF - Artigos/Papers (with refereeing)

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