Comparing optical properties of different species of diatoms

Christian Maibohm, Søren Michael Mørk Friis, Y. Su, Karsten Rottwitt

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Diatoms are single cellular algae encapsulate d in an external wall of micro-structured porous silica called the frustule. Diatoms are present in all water environments and contribute with 20-25 % of the global primary production of oxygen by photosynthesis. The appearance of the frustule is very species dependent with huge variety in size, shape, and micro- structure. We have experimentally investigated optical properties of frustules of several species of diatoms to further understand light harvesting properties together with commo n traits, effects and differences between the different frustules. We have observed, when incident light interacts w ith the micro-structured frustule it is multiple diffracted giving rise to wavelength dependent multiple focal points and other optical effects. Experimental results have been simulated and well confirmed by free space FFT propagation routine analysis software. The software uses parameters which are extracted from experimental im ages as basis for simulation and allows us to extract the influence of the different elements of the frustule. The information could be used both for predicting optical properties of diatoms and by changing frustule parameters, maybe by altering growth conditions of the diatoms tailor their optical properties.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of SPIE : Organic Photonic Materials and Devices XVII
Number of pages6
PublisherSPIE - International Society for Optical Engineering
Publication date2015
Article number93600B
Publication statusPublished - 2015
EventOrganic Photonic Materials and Devices - The Moscone Center, San Francisco, California, United States
Duration: 7 Feb 201512 Feb 2015
Conference number: 9360


ConferenceOrganic Photonic Materials and Devices
LocationThe Moscone Center
CountryUnited States
CitySan Francisco, California
SeriesProceedings of SPIE, the International Society for Optical Engineering

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