Surface plasmon enhanced upconversion luminescence for biosensing applications

Duc Le (Corresponding author), Marjut Kreivi, Sanna Aikio, Jarno Petäjä, Sanna Uusitalo, Tianlong Guo, Matthieu Roussey, Jussi Hiltunen

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference article in proceedingsScientificpeer-review


Upconversion (UC) luminescence sensing is a technique to improve the detection limit of conventional fluorescence in biosensing that is commonly limited by the autofluorescence-generated background signal. The main limitation of UC materials is their low wavelength conversion efficiency. Many studies have been made to enhance the efficiency of UC materials by optimizing light absorption and energy transfer processes. However, rather low efficiency remains an issue limiting the practical usage of UC materials in biosensors. Plasmon enhancement is a way to improve UC photoluminescence by enhancing the excitation and emission rates. In this study, we modeled and fabricated gold gratings for exciting surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) at 976-nm wavelength. We aim at increasing the local optical intensity at the locations of UC nanoparticles on a nano-structured plasmonic surface. The UC nanoparticles were adsorbed on the gratings via biomolecule conjugation. UC photoluminescence on the gratings was compared with flat gold surfaces. Experimentally, we achieved UC enhancement up to 70, which is relatively high in comparison with other plasmon-enhanced UC techniques presented in the literature. The results of our work can be applied in various biosensing applications in which low excitation intensity is preferred.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationPlasmonics in Biology and Medicine XX
EditorsTuan Vo-Dinh, Ho-Pui A. Ho, Krishanu Ray
PublisherInternational Society for Optics and Photonics SPIE
ISBN (Electronic)978-1-5106-5898-1
ISBN (Print)978-1-5106-5897-4
Publication statusPublished - 16 Mar 2023
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventPlasmonics in Biology and Medicine XX, SPIE BiOS 2023 - San Francisco, United States
Duration: 28 Jan 20233 Feb 2023

Publication series

SeriesProceedings of SPIE


ConferencePlasmonics in Biology and Medicine XX, SPIE BiOS 2023
Country/TerritoryUnited States
CitySan Francisco


  • upconversion
  • luminescence
  • surface plasmon polaritons
  • plasmon-enhanced upconversion
  • biosensing
  • gratings
  • upconversion nanoparticles
  • upconversion luminescence


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