Min Jiang, Guanghui Wang, Wenxiang Jiao, Zhoufeng Ying, Ningmu Zou, Ho-pui Ho, Tianyu Sun, and Xuping Zhang
We report a nano-optical conveyor belt containing an array of gold plasmonic non-concentric nanorings (PNNRs) for the realization of trapping and unidirectional transportation of nanoparticles through rotating the polarization of an excitation beam. The location of hot spots within an asymmetric plasmonic nanostructure is polarization dependent, thus making it possible to manipulate a trapped target by rotating the incident polarization state. In the case of PNNR, the two poles have highly unbalanced trap potential. This greatly enhances the chance of transferring trapped particles between adjacent PNNRs in a given direction through rotating the polarization. As confirmed by three-dimensional finite-difference time-domain analysis, an array of PNNRs forms an unidirectional nano-optical conveyor belt, which delivers target nanoparticles or biomolecules over a long distance with nanometer accuracy. With the capacity to trap and to transfer, our design offers a versatile scheme for conducting mechanical sample manipulation in many on-chip optofluidic applications.