Surface Plasmon Resonance Chemical Electrode

Introduction Sensors based the surface plasmon resonance (SPR) effect sense the refractive index of a thin region adjacent to the sensing surface. If there are several different species present in solution at the surface of the sensor, the sensor will measure an effective index of refraction which is a function of all the species. In order to get around this lack of selectivity, functionalized surfaces of the SPR sensors have been used to selectively bind specific molecules. This typically involves complicated and time-consuming chemistry, and can result in sensors that are stable over only a short period of time. Technology description Researchers at the University of Washington have developed a new device that combines electrochemical methods and SPR to detect unknown species. The SPR and electrochemical measurements can be performed simultaneously or serially. This invention provides for measurement of electrochemical properties of unknown species giving rise to SPR effects and for measurement of SPR as a function of electrochemical behavior. Business opportunity The combination of these two types of measurements by a single sensor device is useful in a variety of applications. For Example, the device can be used to characterize interspecies compound formation by comparison to the baseline response of the sensor. It is also very useful in identifying two redox-active analytes with very similar oxidation potentials. Stage of development Initial data and working prototypes exist for this technology.

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