Honors College Theses

Publication Date



Chemistry (B.S.)

Document Type and Release Option

Thesis (open access)

Faculty Mentor

John Stone


Gold nanoparticles are of interest to a number of fields due to their size-dependent optical properties, high stability, and large surface area. The combination of these properties allows for a variety of uses including photothermal therapy, drug delivery and catalysis. Gold nanorods (GNR) absorb light of a given wavelength which stimulates the oscillation of electrons on the surface and is known as the surface plasmon resonance effect. The localized heating of rods via irradiation may cause enhanced effectiveness of an attached organic catalyst which allows the oxidation of alcohols to occur at room temperature. Previously, similar catalytic systems required high temperatures that reduced the lifetime of the catalyst.