Nanostructured Silicon-Based Fingerprint Dusting Powders for Enhanced Visualization and Detection by Mass Spectrometry

Taryn M Guinan, Hilton Kobus, Yiqing Lu, Martin Sweetman, Steven J P McInnes, K. Paul Kirkbride, Nicolas H Voelcker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

4 Citations (Scopus)


Porous silicon microparticles (pSi MPs) functionalized with fluorescent dyes (lissamine and carboxy-5-fluorescein) and intrinsically luminescent pSi MPs were explored as novel fingerprint dusting powders. The versatility of luminescent pSi MPs is demonstrated through time-gated imaging of their long-lived (lifetime>28 μs) near-IR emission, and mass spectrometry analysis of fingerprints dusted with luminescent pSi MPs to provide further information on exogenous small molecules present in latent fingerprints. To catch a thief: In research on forensic methods novel nanostructured silicon microparticles with long luminescence decay times and near-IR emission were used as fingerprint dusting powders (see figure).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)258-261
Number of pages4
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • fingerprint dusting
  • luminescence
  • mass spectrometry
  • silicon nanostructures
  • time-resolved spectroscopy

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