Throughout the course of her Nuffield Foundation project this summer Radhika Patel will be making updates of her progress on our blog. The first instalment is below.
Radhika writes: Having joined the UCL Optical Tweezers Group at the end of June, I have been trapping micron sized particles using a diode laser and measuring the spring constant of the optical trap. The objective was to familiarise myself with the apparatus and theory of optical trapping, and learn about different methods for calibration. Alongside this I have been learning about the experiment that Susan Skelton (PhD student) is working on which is an inverted optical tweezers. We have been calibrating the optical tweezers for use in Photonic Force Microscopy (PFM) which is the project put forward to the Nuffield Foundation for the Undergraduate Research Bursary I was granted this summer.