Skip Navigation
OU Public Affairs WebsiteThe University of OklahomaPublic Affairs

OU Physicist Receives Prestigious Keck Foundation Grant for Development of a Quantum Enhanced Plasmonic Sensor

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

7-25-14

Contact: Jana Smith, Director, Strategic Communications for R&D, (405) 325-1322, jana.smith@ou.edu

NORMAN – A University of Oklahoma physicist has received a $1 million grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation to develop a quantum enhanced plasmonic sensor. The emerging field of physics known as quantum plasmonics will enable technology for sensing applications and lead to earlier detection of diseases, detection of pathogens that were previously ‘invisible,’ and advanced warning of dangerous pollutants or chemicals in the atmosphere.

“The proposed project merges different fields of research, making it unique and even more valuable, as its applicability goes beyond the field of Atomic, Molecular and Optical Physics,” said OU President David L. Boren. “In addition, it opens the doors to collaboration with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which will greatly benefit both the Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and the University of Oklahoma,” he said.

Albert Marino, assistant professor in the Homer L. Dodge Department of Physics and Astronomy, OU College of Arts and Sciences and the project’s principal investigator, will collaborate on the four-year project, Quantum Enhanced Plasmonic Sensors, with Raphael Pooser, Oak Ridge National Laboratory and the University of Tennessee. Pooser developed a quantum plasmonics program at Oak Ridge National Laboratory and has worked with Marino on other related projects.

Marino and Pooser’s groundbreaking idea will result in an ultra-sensitive sensing device with the potential to revolutionize a number of fields and dramatically improve the detection and identification of chemical, biomolecules and changes in atmospheric pressure. The practical applications of this technology include the ability to characterize chemical and biological agents in extremely small quantities with minimal error—in contrast to the hours of processing today.

“We will go beyond the current state-of-the-art by combining quantum states of light with novel plasmonic sensors to obtain a sensitivity enhancement of several orders of magnitude,” states Marino. “Traditional plasmonic sensors are used to detect local changes in air pressure or traces of biomolecules and chemicals, but they are approaching their ultimate sensitivity.”

One of the most important benefits of this research is the potential to bring quantum enhanced sensors to practical applications in the fields of chemistry, medicine and atmospheric science. The quantum enhanced plasmonic sensor proposed will serve as proof of principle for a new practical sensor class based on quantum states of light.

For more information about this research project, please contact Alberto Marino at marino@ou.edu or visit his website at https://www.nhn.ou.edu/people/marino.

 2014  |  2013  |  2012  |  2011

April 2015

OU Commencement to Feature Cornell University President-Elect, Photo Highlights of Graduating Class and Music

Five OU Faculty Named Presidential Teaching Fellows in Joe C. and Carole Kerr McClendon Honors College

University of Oklahoma Professor, OU Alumna Receive Apple Distinguished Educator Awards 

OU Alumnus Named Special Assistant to the Vice President for the University Community

OU Designated Big 12 Conference Champion in EPA’s College and University Green Power Challenge

OU President David L. Boren Announces $30 Million in Gifts to Name College of Engineering and Establish New School of Biomedical Engineering

OU and Nanowave Technologies Inc. Enter into Research Agreement

Four OU Students Receive Boren Awards for International Study

2014-2015 OU President's Trophy Winners Announced

OU Engineering Professors among Nation's Best 'Young Investigators'

Oklahoma Water Survey Plans Water Reuse Workshops

OU Students to Serve Hispanic Communities During "Big Event" Day of Community Service

OU’s Donald W. Reynolds Performing Arts Center on List of Most Beautiful Conservatories, Schools of Music

Honorary Degree Recipients to be Honored at OU Commencement Friday, May 8

April 17 Dedication Ceremony Scheduled for Hester Hall, Home of OU College of International Studies

Cornell University President-Elect Elizabeth Garrett to Deliver OU's 2015 Commencement Address

Gary England to Lead New Severe Weather Series Featured on OU's Janux Platform

Two OU Students Receive Goldwater Honors

OU Physicists First to Create New Molecule with Record-Setting Dipole Moment

OU Makes History with Record-Setting Number of Freshman National Merit Scholars

For requests for past releases, please contact OU Public Affairs at (405) 325-1701 or publicaffairs@ou.edu.