Advanced science and technology frequently encounters the need to detect particles in the micrometer and nanometer range of a given composition. While the scattering process of light by small particles is well documented, most conventional analytic methods employ wide illumination of large ensembles of particles. With such an approach, no information can be obtained about single particles due to their weak interaction. In this paper, we show that single particles can be classified with respect to their material composition by analyzing the scattering pattern of a focused Gaussian beam.
© 2011 Optical Society of America
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