Optical manipulation of aerosol particle arrays

J. P. Reid, A. E. Haddrell, J. S. Walker, R. Power, D. L. Bones, J. F. Davies

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

2 Citations (Scopus)


Aerosols play a crucial role in many areas of science, ranging from atmospheric chemistry and physics, to drug delivery to the lungs, combustion science and spray drying. The development of new methods to characterise the properties and dynamics of aerosol particles is of crucial importance if the complex role that particles play is to be more fully understood. Optical tweezers provide a valuable new tool to address fundamental questions in aerosol science. Single or multiple particles 1-15 mu m in diameter can be manipulated over indefinite timescales using optical tweezing. Linear and non-linear Raman and fluorescence spectroscopies can be used to probe a particle's composition and size. In this paper we will report on the latest developments in the use of holographic optical trapping (HOT) to study aerosols. Although widely used to trap and manipulate arrays of particles in the condensed phase, the application of HOT to aerosols is still in its infancy. We will explore the opportunities provided by the formation of complex optical landscapes for controlling aerosol flow, for comparing the properties of multiple particles, for performing the first ever digital microfluidic operations in the aerosol phase and for examining interparticle interactions that can lead to coalescence/coagulation. Although aerosol coagulation is the primary process driving the evolution of particle size distributions, it remains very poorly understood. Using HOT, we can resolve the time-dependent motion of trapped particles and the light scattering from particles during the coalescence process.

Original languageEnglish
EditorsK Dholakia, GC Spalding
Place of PublicationBELLINGHAM
PublisherSociety of Photo-Optical Instrumentation Engineers (SPIE)
Number of pages10
ISBN (Print)978-0-81948-707-0
Publication statusPublished - 2011
EventOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VIII - San Diego, United States
Duration: 21 Aug 201125 Aug 2011


ConferenceOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VIII
CountryUnited States
CitySan Diego

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