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Hotspot Generation for Unique Identification with Nanomaterials

Research output: Contribution to Journal/MagazineJournal articlepeer-review

Article number1528
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>15/01/2021
<mark>Journal</mark>Scientific Reports
Number of pages7
Publication StatusPublished
<mark>Original language</mark>English


Nanoscale variations in the structure and composition of an object are an enticing basis for verifying its identity, due to the physical complexity of attempting to reproduce such a system. The biggest practical challenge for nanoscale authentication lies in producing a system that can be assessed with a facile measurement. Here, a system is presented in which InP/ZnS quantum dots are randomly distributed on a surface of aluminium coated with gold nanoparticles (NPs). Variations in the local arrangement of the QDs and NPs is shown to lead to interactions between them, which can suppress or enhance fluorescence from the QDs. This position-dependent interaction can be mapped, allowing intensity, emission dynamics, and/or wavelength variations to be used to uniquely identify a specific sample at the nanoscale with a far-field optical measurement. This demonstration could pave the way to producing robust anti-counterfeiting devices.