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Orientation sensors require the monitoring of polarization-dependent surface plasmons of single nanoparticles. Herein, we present both the longitudinal and transverse surface plasmonic resonance from a single goldnanorod (AuNR) using conventional dark-field microscopy. The relative peak intensities of the transverse and longitudinal surface plasmons of a single AuNR can be successfully tuned by polarized excitation, which is an important step towards the use of transverse plasmon resonance of single AuNRs without photo-induced reshaping of nanoparticles. More interestingly, compared with AuNRs with small diameters, unique optical properties from AuNRs with diameters greater than 30 nm are revealed. As a result, optical images with different colors, rainbow nanoparticles (sea green, brown, red, yellow and green), depending on the polarization angle, can be revealed by a single AuNR. This result holds great promise for polarization-controlled colorimetric nanomaterials and single particle tracers in living cells and microfluidic flows.
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