The azo dye, basic blue 66 (BB66) is used in a photocatalyst activity indicator ink (paii) to assess the activity of low activity photocatalytic surfaces, such as commercial photocatalytic tiles and silicone contaminated self-cleaning glass. The BB66 paii is shown to respond much faster than a previously reported, resazurin (Rz) based paii, i.e. the use of a BB66 paii on low activity self-cleaning tiles was found to be >6 times faster than the Rz paii. The BB66 paii is also shown to be effective at assessing the activity of piece of commercial self-cleaning glass contaminated with a coating of silicone, on which the Rz ink, in contrast, failed to show any significant change in colour over the same time period.
Strategies to produce an ultracold sample of carbon atoms are explored and assessed with the help of quantum chemistry. After a brief discussion of the experimental difficulties using conventional methods, two strategies are investigated. The first attempts to exploit charge exchange reactions between ultracold metal atoms and sympathetically cooled C(+) ions. Ab initio calculations including electron correlation have been conducted on the molecular ions [LiC](+) and [BeC](+) to determine whether alkali or alkaline earth metals are a suitable buffer gas for the formation of C atoms but strong spontaneous radiative charge exchange ensure they are not ideal. The second technique involves the stimulated production of ultracold C atoms from a gas of laser cooled carbides. Calculations on LiC suggest that the alkali carbides are not suitable but the CH radical is a possible laser cooling candidate thanks to very favourable Frank-Condon factors. A scheme based on a four pulse STIRAP excitation pathway to a Feshbach resonance is outlined for the production of atomic fragments with near zero centre of mass velocity.
The feasibility of laser cooling AlH and AlF is investigated using ab initio quantum chemistry. All the electronic states corresponding to the ground and lowest two excited states of the Al atom are calculated using multi-reference configuration interaction (MRCI) and the large AV6Z basis set for AlH. The smaller AVQZ basis set is used to calculate the valence electronic states of AlF. Theoretical Franck-Condon factors are determined for the A(1)?? X(1)?(+) transitions in both radicals and found to agree with the highly diagonal factors found experimentally, suggesting computational chemistry is an effective method for screening suitable laser cooling candidates. AlH does not appear to have a transition quite as diagonal as that in SrF (which has been laser cooled) but the A(1)?? X(1)?(+) transition transition of AlF is a strong candidate for cooling with just a single laser, though the cooling frequency is deep in the UV. Furthermore, the a(3)?? X(1)?(+) transitions are also strongly diagonal and in AlF is a practical method for obtaining very low final temperatures around 3 ?K.
We report a method for tracking individual quantum dot (QD) labeled proteins inside of live cells that uses four overlapping confocal volume elements and active feedback once every 5 ms to follow three-dimensional molecular motion. This method has substantial advantages over three-dimensional molecular tracking methods based upon charge-coupled device cameras, including increased Z-tracking range (10 ?m demonstrated here), substantially lower excitation powers (15 ?W used here), and the ability to perform time-resolved spectroscopy (such as fluorescence lifetime measurements or fluorescence correlation spectroscopy) on the molecules being tracked. In particular, we show for the first time fluorescence photon antibunching of individual QD labeled proteins in live cells and demonstrate the ability to track individual dye-labeled nucleotides (Cy5-dUTP) at biologically relevant transport rates. To demonstrate the power of these methods for exploring the spatiotemporal dynamics of live cells, we follow individual QD-labeled IgE-Fc?RI receptors both on and inside rat mast cells. Trajectories of receptors on the plasma membrane reveal three-dimensional, nanoscale features of the cell surface topology. During later stages of the signal transduction cascade, clusters of QD labeled IgE-Fc?RI were captured in the act of ligand-mediated endocytosis and tracked during rapid (~950 nm/s) vesicular transit through the cell.
We recently developed an inorganic shell approach for suppressing blinking in nanocrystal quantum dots (NQDs) that has the potential to dramatically improve the utility of these fluorophores for single-NQD tracking of individual molecules in cell biology. Here, we consider in detail the effect of shell thickness and composition on blinking suppression, focusing on the CdSe/CdS core/shell system. We also discuss the blinking mechanism as understood through profoundly altered blinking statistics. We clarify the dependence of blinking behavior and photostability on shell thickness, as well as on interrogation times. We show that, while the thickest-shell systems afford the greatest advantages in terms of enhanced optical properties, thinner-shell NQDs may be adequate for certain applications requiring relatively shorter interrogation times. Shell thickness also determines the sensitivity of the NQD optical properties to aqueous-phase transfer, a critical step in rendering NQDs compatible with bioimaging applications. Lastly, we provide a proof-of-concept demonstration of the utility of these unique NQDs for fluorescent particle tracking.
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