Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name


Degree Program

Applied Physics



Major Professor

Stokes, Kevin

Second Advisor

Puri, Ashok

Third Advisor

Ventrice, Carl

Fourth Advisor

Tang, Jinke


The Faraday rotation spectrum of composites containing magnetite nanoparticles is found to be dependent on the interparticle spacing of the constituent nanoparticles. The composite materials are prepared by combining chemicallysynthesized Fe3O4 (magnetite) nanoparticles (8 nm diameter) and poly(methylmethacrylate) (PMMA). Composites are made containing a range of nanoparticle concentrations. The peak of the main spectral feature depends on nanoparticle concentration; this peak is observed to shift from approximately 470 nm for (dilute composites) to 560 nm (concentrated). A theory is presented based on the dipole approximation which accounts for optical coupling between magnetite particles. Qualitative correlations between theoretical calculations and experimental data suggest the shifts in spectral peak position depend on both interparticle distance and geometrical configuration.


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