Schematic of Raman-Sensor Chip (image) Princeton University, Engineering School Caption This schematic shows the architecture of the sensor developed at Princeton. The chip is covered with structures that feature two key components: a cavity formed by metal on the top and at the base of each pillar; and metal particles of about 20 nanometers in diameter, known as plasmonic nanodots, on the pillar wall, with small gaps of about 2 nanometers between the metal components. The small particles and gaps significantly boost the Raman signal. The cavities serve as antennae, trapping light from the laser so it passes the plasmonic nanodots multiple times to generate the Raman signal rather than only once. The cavities also enhance the outgoing Raman signal. Credit Stephen Y. Chou Usage Restrictions Please credit Stephen Y. Chou Disclaimer: AAAS and EurekAlert! are not responsible for the accuracy of news releases posted to EurekAlert! by contributing institutions or for the use of any information through the EurekAlert system.