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Future is Brilliant

Dr Taras Plakhotnik

School of Physical Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Physical Sciences and Architecture, University of Queensland

Tuesday, 20 November 2007, 2.00pm, EN101, Ground Floor, Engineering Building, Hawthorn.

The current interest of the Optical Nano Probe Group at the University of Queensland covers a broad range of topics which include advanced methods of data analysis, electrodynamics of visual receptors and energy transfer in nano structures, spectral diffusion and charge transfer in semiconductor nano crystals, and biochemical and optical properties of nano diamonds. As one can judge from the title, the main focus of this talk will be on diamonds but other activities will be explained briefly. Diamond, a metastable state of carbon, possesses unique properties (record values of hardness, refractive index, speed of sound, thermal conductivity - the list seems endless) enabling a broad variety of applications. When a diamond crystal is only few nanometers across, a perspective of intercellular applications opens up. For example, the existence of a large number of colour centres (among more than 100 options nitrogen related centres are of particular interest) makes a nano diamond an ideal optical label. However, the metastable nature of diamonds becomes a significant issue when its crystal consists of only about 10,000 atoms. Other interesting phenomena are related to the modification of the phonon modes caused by their tight confinement in an extremely small volume. In my talk, I hope to convince you that nano diamonds are not only effective suppliers of challenging questions for fundamental physical sciences but also encapsulate breathtaking biomedical applications which are only waiting to be released. Nano diamonds are making an ideal playground for new and unexpected developments.

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