We demonstrated a method to accurately measure the zeta potentials and surface charges of individual particles by surface plasmon resonance microscopy (SPRM). The principle is based on the sensitive dependence of surface plasmons in a metal surface on the distance between a particle and the surface. By applying a periodic (ac) electric field to the metal surface, the charged particle oscillates, which is measured with SPRM, from which the zeta potential and the surface charge of the particle can be determined. The ac method reduces the electro-osmotic effect and noises induced by Brownian motions and allows for the rapid determination of the zeta potentials of individual particles.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number223703
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number22
StatePublished - Nov 29 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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