Technology and Materials for Sensors Based on Surface Plasmon Resonance

This chapter provides a comprehensive overview of the materials and manufacturing technologies for sensitive elements for surface plasmon resonance sensors (SPR).

The statistical statistics presented in this research show that the number of publications in scientific journals devoted to the SPR sensor issue has been steadily increasing by the exponential law, reaching around 6,000 by the end of 2015. It indicates the relevance of further research targeted at developing and manufacturing novel analytical devices based on the SPR concept. The key directions for developing technology and construction of current SPR sensors to boost their sensitivity and measurement accuracy are discussed in the paper. It has been demonstrated that by reducing the roughness of the plasmon carrying layer and adding an extra dielectric layer with a developed surface, the sensitivity of the sensitive element (SE) and the researched substance may be improved more than twofold. Thermal annealing is the most common technological method for reducing surface roughness, with the best results achieved at a temperature of 120°C. The narrowing of the reflection characteristic R(, which may be achieved by decreasing the roughness of the metal layer due to changing the geometry of mutual arrangement of the substrate and evaporator, is a viable technical technique to improve measurement accuracy and sensitivity. The surface roughness of the SE metal layer is reduced by 2.5 times when the substrate is situated at a 45° angle between its normal and the direction to the evaporator and the SE metal layer is deposited multiply: from 2 to 0.8 nm. Metal oxides such as Al2 O3, TiO2, SiOx, and ZnO, as well as nitrides such as InN, are frequently used as an extra dielectric layer. The existence of this extra dielectric layer lowers the detection limit when measuring changes in the examined substance’s refraction index down to 1×10–9, which corresponds to binding the complementary pair antigene–antibody with a concentration of antigene of 1 fg/mL. This detection limit is one order lower than that of commercially available SPR-based analytical equipment (for example, 3.10–8, which is typical for commercial Biacore T200). The application of multilayer graphene coatings and polymer layers created by polymerization in a high-frequency plasma of inert gas are discussed in this paper as prospective approaches for the development of sensorics based on SPR. Further development of SPR sensors, in our opinion, will focus on improving selectivity, wear resistance of the sensitive element surface, and receptor renewal mechanisms for multiple uses of the sensitive elements.

Based on a survey of the literature, we believe that developing SPR-sensors in the infrared range of the spectrum is promising for biological research and immunosensors.

Author(S) Details

Hanna Dorozinska
National Technical University of Ukraine “Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute”, 37, Prosp. Peremohy, Kyiv, 03056, Ukraine.

Glib Dorozinsky
V. Lashkaryov Institute of Semiconductor Physics NAS of Ukraine, 41, Nauki Ave., Kyiv, 03028, Ukraine.

Natalia Kachur
V. Lashkaryov Institute of Semiconductor Physics NAS of Ukraine, 41, Nauki Ave., Kyiv, 03028, Ukraine.

Volodymyr Maslov
V. Lashkaryov Institute of Semiconductor Physics NAS of Ukraine, 41, Nauki Ave., Kyiv, 03028, Ukraine.

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