Studies of droplet manipulation in optical traps

David McGloin, Daniel R. Burnham, Michael D. Summers, Daniel Rudd, Arianne Shavisi, Neil Dewar

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


    We discuss the application of optical trapping techniques to droplets, both in air (aerosols) and in fluid (emulsions). We show the holographic optical manipulation of aerosols and how this can be used to transfer orbital angular momentum to airborne particles. We demonstrate new types of traps for aerosols in the form of dual beam fibre traps and compare the trapping efficiency of IR and visible lasers. We discuss some of the interesting dynamics that can be observed when trapping airborne particles and how this appears to differ from conventional liquid based devices. We also examine how holographic optical trapping can be used to facilitate droplet manipulation in another liquid phase. We conclude with a discussion of the difficulties associated with trapping particles in air and possible solutions and well as look at some of the anticipated applications of such work, in particular in digital microfluidics.

    Original languageEnglish
    Title of host publicationOptical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IV
    EditorsKishan Dholakia, Gabriel C. Spalding
    Place of PublicationBellingham
    PublisherSPIE-International Society for Optical Engineering
    Number of pages13
    ISBN (Print)9780819467928
    Publication statusPublished - 2007
    EventSPIE Optics+Photonics 2007: Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IV - San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, United States
    Duration: 26 Aug 200729 Aug 2007

    Publication series

    NameProceedings of SPIE


    ConferenceSPIE Optics+Photonics 2007: Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IV
    CountryUnited States
    CitySan Diego
    Internet address


    • optical tweezers
    • laser tweezers
    • aerosols
    • holographic optical tweezers
    • Brownian dynamics
    • GROWTH
    • LIGHT
    • SIZE
    • AIR

    Cite this

    McGloin, D., Burnham, D. R., Summers, M. D., Rudd, D., Shavisi, A., & Dewar, N. (2007). Studies of droplet manipulation in optical traps. In K. Dholakia, & G. C. Spalding (Eds.), Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation IV [66441I ] (Proceedings of SPIE; Vol. 6644). SPIE-International Society for Optical Engineering.