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Research Article Open Access

Photonic Crystal Film Preparation and Characterization for Chemical Sensing 


Meiying Ye1, Mohammad  Heshmat2Paul C.H. Li2*


1College of Material, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering, Hangzhou Normal University, Hangzhou, 311121,
People’s  Republic of China

2Department of Chemistry, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6, Canada

Adv. Mater. Proc., 2019, 4 (2), AMP1401463

DOI: 10.5185/amp.2019.1463

Publication Date (Web):05 April 2019

Copyright © IAAM-VBRI Press



Functionalized photonic crystal films were prepared for sensing small chemical molecules. First, silica nanospheres were self-assembled to form a colloidal crystal template within a mold. The interstitial space of this template was infiltrated by the hydrogel precursors, which were then allowed to polymerize. Upon removal of silica by hydrofluoric acid etching, a photonic crystal film, which produced a pink structural color, was formed. To add a chemical sensing functionality to the film, the molecules to be sensed were mixed with the hydrogel precursors for molecular imprinting; the amino acid proline was used for this purpose. Characterization of the functionalized photonic crystal film was conducted by optical reflectance measurements and imaging. The nanopores were imaged using SEM after cryogenic freezing of the film samples. Chemical sensing of proline was conducted on the film, with the reflectance peak shifting from 650 nm to
795 nm. Copyright © VBRI Press.


Photonic crystal template, molecular imprinting, hydrogel polymerization, optical reflectance measurement, amino acid detection.