Optical manipulation of aerosols using surface acoustic wave nebulisation

S. Anand, J. Nylk, C. Dodds, J. M. Cooper, S. N. Neale, D. McGloin

    Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


    High density micron sized aerosols from liquid surfaces were generated using surface acoustic wave (SAW) nebulisation. The SAWs are made from a set of interdigitated electrodes (IDT) deposited on a lithium niobate (LiNbO3) substrate and are designed to operate around 10MHz. RF powers of similar to 235mW are used to achieve nebulisation. Power below this results in droplet motion across the substrate surface. The nebulisation process generated aerosols of a narrow size distribution with diameter ranging from 0.5-2 mu m. We consider ways in which these aerosols can be loaded into optical traps for further study. In particular we look at how SAW nebulisation can be used to load particles into a trap in a far more robust manner than a conventional nebuliser device. We demonstrate trapping of a range of particle types and sizes and analyse the size distribution of particles as a function of the applied frequency to the SAW device. We show that it is simpler to load, in particular, solid particles into optical traps using this technique compared to conventional nebulisation. We also consider the possibilities for loading nanoparticles into aerosol optical tweezers. 

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VIII
    EditorsKishan Dholakia, Gabriel C. Spalding
    Place of PublicationBellingham
    PublisherSPIE-International Society for Optical Engineering
    Number of pages10
    ISBN (Print)9780819487070
    Publication statusPublished - 2011
    EventSPIE Optics+Photonics 2011: Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VIII - San Diego Marriott Marquis and Marina, San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, United States
    Duration: 21 Aug 201125 Aug 2011

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of SPIE


    ConferenceSPIE Optics+Photonics 2011: Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VIII
    Country/TerritoryUnited States
    CitySan Diego
    Internet address


    • aerosol
    • optical trapping
    • surface acoustic wave
    • TRAP


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