Electronic Theses and Dissertations





Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science


Electrical and Computer Engr


Computer Engineering

Committee Chair

Russell Deaton

Committee Member

Eddie Jacobs

Committee Member

Aaron Robinson


Advances in nanotechnology are leading to promising possibilities in the field of cancer diagnostics and treatment. One proposed method is to coat metastasized cancer cells with a metamaterial constructed from gold nanospheres. Then a photothermal reaction may be induced to destroy the cancer cells by exploiting the fact that gold nanoparticles have a strong localized surface plasmon resonance at infrared wavelengths of light. This metamaterial could be manufactured through self-assembly by using DNA to bind the gold nanospheres together into an array. A material constructed in this manner would have flaws that are inherent in any self-assembly process and a vacancy threshold that still allows for a strong optical response must be determined. The effects of flaws on the optical properties of such a material are addressed in this thesis by modeling the material flaws as randomly generated vacancies in a 5 x 5 array of gold nanoparticles. COMSOL is then used to simulate the optical response from 400 nm - 700 nm in wavelength. The results show that the maximum extinction efficiency response of the array occurs at 510 nm and is tolerant up to a vacancy error rate of 50%. When this threshold is maintained the array's peak response for current density will be red-shifted 30 nm ahead and 10 nm ahead for total power dissipation. Showing that extinction efficiency can reliably be used to predict the response of both current density and total power dissipation for an array of gold nanospheres, while allowing for a large amount of vacancy errors.


Data is provided by the student.

Library Comment

dissertation or thesis originally submitted to the local University of Memphis Electronic Theses & dissertation (ETD) Repository.