UV and fluorescent probes for nanoscale sensing of dielectric constant and voltage
The local dielectric constant and potential sensed by species at an electrode can determine the structure of double layers, number of ions availble for conduction, and electrochemical redox processes. However, it is difficult to experimentally measure dielectric properties at electrodes. Our group will develop well known optical dyes with polarity sensitive absorbance or voltage sensitive fluorescence to probe spatial variations in the dielectric properties near charged surfaces. Using various labeling strategies, these dyes can be placed at controlled distances from a surface or charged nanofiller to obtain nanoscale resolution.