Processes at nanoparticle surfaces are crucial for the properties of new nano-materials and for their application in novel technologies. However, the tools and methodology to study phenomena at nanosurfaces are scarce. The mechanisms and forces underlying molecular interactions with nanoparticle surfaces, molecule-particle binding energies and surface coverage, for example remain largely unknown. Our research thus focuses on developing experimental approaches and tools to explore the dynamics and kinetics of chemical and physical processes at nanoparticle surfaces.
Single-wall carbon nanotubes (SWNTs) here serve as a testing ground to develop a better understanding of microscopic mechanisms underlying simple chemical and physical interactions and phenomena at nanoparticle surfaces. Spectroscopic tools used for our investigations range from femtosecond time-resolved spectroscopy over time-correlated single photon counting to single particle spectroscopy supplemented by microfluidic technology.