Nandita Nag

Date of Graduation

Summer 2009


Master of Science in Materials Science


Physics, Astronomy and Materials Science

Committee Chair



nanoparticle, zinc oxide, laser ablation, functionalization, protein molecule

Subject Categories

Materials Science and Engineering


ZnO nanoparticles being biocompatible and chemically stable have much potential for biomedical applications that include anti-bacterial and mold prevention, air ventilation and purification, water purification, photosynthesis, and disease detection. Therefore, the fabrication of ZnO nanoparticles and their binding to biomolecules would be a notable contribution to this field. This research is aimed at the fabrication of ZnO nanoparticles using a safe, cost effective and easy to handle technique that is capable of producing nanoparticles free of any contamination, and functionalization of those particles with biomolecules. ZnO nanoparticles have been fabricated at room temperature by laser ablation of ZnO thin film prepared with a pulsed laser deposition (PLD) technique. Characterization of the nanoparticles has been done using UV-Visible (UV-Vis) spectroscopy, fluorescence spectroscopy, dynamic light scattering (DLS), and transmission electron microscopy (TEM). UV-Vis absorption and fluorescence emission peaks at ~ 280 and ~ 410 nm respectively validate the exact nature of ZnO nanoparticles. Size determination of these particles by DLS and TEM have demonstrated that majority of the particles are in the range of 80 to 90 nm, which authenticates the presence of nanoparticles. Effects of the laser parameters on the growth of the nanoparticles have been investigated. Enhanced homogeneity and stability of these ZnO nanoparticles have been observed when produced in presence of 0.2 % glucose solution. Functionalization of these nanoparticles has been successfully established by assemblage with protein molecules. These results could play a significant role in future development of antibiotic free approach for treating microbial infection where antimicrobial enzymes attached to nanoparticles could be used.


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