Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Seminar: 1.11.12 / CREOL 102 / 2-3pm / “Nanoporous Silica as Photonic Nanocomposite”, Igor Sokolov

Seminar: “Nanoporous Silica as Photonic Nanocomposite”, Igor Sokolov


Wednesday, January 11, 2012 / 2-3pm

Igor Sokolov

Department of Physics, Department of Chemistry and Biomolecular Science,

Nanoengineering and Biotechnology Laboratories Center (NABLAB),

Clarkson University


Nanoporous (also called mesoporous) silica is a rich class of self-assembled nanocomposite materials with a well-organized uniform pore structure. When optically active molecules are physically encapsulated in the pores, it creates a material with rather non-trivial photonic properties, or “photonic nanocomposite” for short.

In this talk, I describe the basic principles of the synthesis of these materials to demonstrate the reach family of obtained shapes. The synthesis can be tuned to make a large variety of shapes, from films to particles of complex topology. The particle size can be made as small as 3 nm and as big as thousands of microns. This material can have rather non-trivial photonic properties. For example, nanoporous silica particles can have unusually high (“ultrabright”) fluorescence, abnormally large Stock’s shift, rather complex spectra, etc. For comparison, nanoparticles of this material can be substantially brighter than quantum dots (compared to water dispersible quantum dots of the same size). The described material allows embedding a broad family of dyes and other compounds due to the simple physical nature of encapsulation. It allows creating “smart” photonic composite, the material that changes its optical properties depending on the external stimuli. Finally, I will discuss the very prospective biomedical applications of the nanoporous silica particles.


Sokolov received his undergraduate training at St. Petersburg State University, Russia (B.S., 1984) and his graduate training in the Russian Bureau of Standards (Russian NIST), Ph.D. at 1991. After his postdoctoral training in the University of Toronto, he joined the faculty at Clarkson University in 2000 as an Assistant Professor in Physics. His current positions are Professor of Physics, Professor of Chemistry and Bimolecular Science, NY Center for Advanced Material Processing (CAMP) Professor, and the Director of the Nanoengineering and Biotechnology Laboratories Center (NABLAB).

His research interests are related to the study of photonic and mechanical properties of nano- and bio- composite materials, bio sensors for biology/medicine, and light-energy conversion, etc. His research has been supported by federal and state agencies, industry. The awards include E.L.Ginzton International Fellowship Award from Stanford University, Soros Research Award, Awards from Ministry of Education of Japanese Government, etc. He has 120+ refereed publications (2500+ citations), 29 patents issued and pending, 100+ invited lectures, seminars, conference presentations; participation in 100+ conferences with contributed presentations. He has supervised 15 graduate, and 11 undergraduate students; graduated 11 MS. and Ph.D. students, trained 7 postdocs.

For More Information:

Bahaa E. A. Saleh

Dean, College of Optics and Photonics

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