Surface plasmon resonance of gold nanoparticles assemblies at liquid | liquid interfaces
Surface plasmon resonance (SPR) was observed when a planar close-packed assembly of gold nanoparticles (Au NPs) is adsorbed at the water|1,2-dichloroethane interface. Aqueous gold nanoparticles, 13 or 16 nm in diameter, are deposited at the interface by adding methanol to form a close-packed film with a visible gold mirror reflectance. By total internal reflection of a light beam on the interface, the angular dependence of the interfacial reflectivity was measured in a pseudo-Kretschmann configuration and compared to Fresnel simulations for a homogeneous gold film. The experimental angles for minimum reflectivity were found to match the simulated values. Then, the fluorescence of dye molecules co-adsorbed within 13 and 16 nm gold nanoparticles assemblies at the liquid|liquid interface was measured. The fluorescence intensity under SPR is revealed to be much greater than under total internal reflection conditions, yielding an enhancement factor of approximately 30 and 50 for 13 and 16 nm Au NPs assemblies, respectively. Also, the fluorescence lifetime was found to decrease under SPR conditions.