Date of Graduation


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering (PhD)

Degree Level



Chemical Engineering


D. Keith Roper

Committee Member

David M. Ford

Second Committee Member

David Huitink

Third Committee Member

Robert H. Coridan

Fourth Committee Member

Jerry A. Havens


Biological Sensor, Nanoparticle Printing, Self-Assembly, Thermal Dissipation


Continued population growth and the decrease of existing energy platforms demands long-term solutions for development and implementation of scalable plasmonic metamaterials for energy and agricultural applications. Self-assembled nanoantenna into random and ordered arrangements are advanced herein for optical and thermal enhancements in scalable thin film. An analytical approach to estimating the thermal dynamics of random arrangements of nanoantenna resulted in estimates within 30% across a range of geometric parameters, nanoantenna-containing media, and thermal parameters. Multimodal thermal dynamics of polymer thin films containing gold nanoparticles (AuNPs) were observed through the natural log of the dimensionless temperature driving force plotted versus time and were observed and studied across a range of variables including film thickness, laser power, nanoparticle diameter, respective pixel location, and laser spot size. Large area arrays of nanoantenna were fabricated through a modified directed self-assembly process, which resulted in >2 mm x 2 mm areas with ~100% density of filled cavities containing 150 nm gold nanoparticles. Optical extinction for ordered arrangements of nanoantenna was estimated within 2% using rapid semi-analytic coupled-dipole approximation (rsa-CDA) simulations when contained within patterned PDMS and transferred onto glass substrates. Two biocompatible transfer approaches were developed and implemented to transfer ordered arrangements of nanoantenna to the surface of a leaf: laser induction and resinous adhesion. Dark-field microscopic imaging confirmed the ordering was maintained through the resinous adhesion transfer process. Further development of the fabrication of ordered nanoantenna and transfer onto leaf surfaces supports the design and implementation of crop-based sensors for real-time monitoring of vital crop data for improving crop production and health.