Interest in nanotechnology is driven by the unique and novel properties of nanoscale materials such as the strong interaction of metal particles with light, caused by localized surface plasmon resonances (LSPRs). In this perspective article we review and discuss prominent advantages and advances in single particle studies of plasmonic nanostructures. Common techniques and recent improvements in spatial and spectral resolution will first be outlined, covering both far-field and near-field phenomena. Then, new insight and information uniquely obtained from single particle approaches will be overviewed, including several fundamental studies of plasmonic behaviour, as well as applications using single particle tracking and chemical reaction monitoring. Finally, highly interdisciplinary future directions and experiments are discussed.
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