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Proceedings Paper

Comparing optical properties of different species of diatoms
Author(s): C. Maibohm; Søren M. M. Friis; Y. Su; K. Rottwitt
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Paper Abstract

Diatoms are single cellular algae encapsulated in an external wall of micro-structured porous silica called the frustule. Diatoms are present in all water environments and contribute with 20-25 % of the global primary production of oxygen by photosynthesis. The appearance of the frustule is very species dependent with huge variety in size, shape, and microstructure. We have experimentally investigated optical properties of frustules of several species of diatoms to further understand light harvesting properties together with common traits, effects and differences between the different frustules. We have observed, when incident light interacts with the micro-structured frustule it is multiple diffracted giving rise to wavelength dependent multiple focal points and other optical effects. Experimental results have been simulated and well confirmed by free space FFT propagation routine analysis software. The software uses parameters which are extracted from experimental images as basis for simulation and allows us to extract the influence of the different elements of the frustule. The information could be used both for predicting optical properties of diatoms and by changing frustule parameters, maybe by altering growth conditions of the diatoms tailor their optical properties.

Paper Details

Date Published: 16 March 2015
PDF: 6 pages
Proc. SPIE 9360, Organic Photonic Materials and Devices XVII, 93600B (16 March 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2078822
Show Author Affiliations
C. Maibohm, Technical Univ. of Denmark (Denmark)
Søren M. M. Friis, DTU Fotonik (Denmark)
Y. Su, Univ. of Copenhagen (Denmark)
K. Rottwitt, Technical Univ. of Denmark (Denmark)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9360:
Organic Photonic Materials and Devices XVII
Christopher E. Tabor; François Kajzar; Toshikuni Kaino; Yasuhiro Koike, Editor(s)

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