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27 August 2010 On-the-fly cross flow laser guided separation of aerosol particles
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Laser separation of particles is achieved using forces resulting from the momentum exchange between particles and photons constituting the laser radiation. Particles can experience different optical forces depending on their size and/or optical properties, such as refractive index. Thus, particles can move at different speeds in the presence of an optical force, leading to spatial separations. Several studies for aqueous suspension of particles have been reported in the past. In this paper, we present extensive analysis for optical forces on non-absorbing aerosol particles. We used a loosely focused Gaussian 1064 nm laser to simultaneously hold and deflect particles entrained in flow perpendicular to their direction of travel. The gradient force is used to hold the particles against the viscous drag for a short period of time. The scattering force simultaneously pushes the particles during this period. Theoretical calculations are used to simulate particle trajectories and to determine the net deflection: a measure of the ability to separate. We invented a novel method for aerosol generation and delivery to the flow cell. Particle motion was imaged using a high speed camera working at 3000+ frames per second with a viewing area up to a few millimeters. An 8W near-infrared 1064 nm laser was used to provide the optical force to the particles. Theoretical predictions were corroborated with measurements using polystyrene latex particles of 20 micron diameter. We measured particle deflections up to about 1500 microns. Such large deflections represent a new milestone for optical chromatography in the gas phase.
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A. A. Lall, A. Terray, and S. J. Hart "On-the-fly cross flow laser guided separation of aerosol particles", Proc. SPIE 7762, Optical Trapping and Optical Micromanipulation VII, 77620W (27 August 2010);

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