The paper examines the size domain of particles below 0.3 μm with considerable emphasis on the 0.1 μm and below size range, encompassing the size range of molecules and nuclei which have been described as Rayleigh and Mie scatterers, respectively, after the individuals first responsible for theoretical treatment of the optical scattering properties. Contamination control for critical manufacturing environments is emphasized. Theoretical limits of detection using available lasers are defined and instrumental techniques resulting from compromises reached in their practical application are described. Discussion focuses on aerosol and is extended to include liquids and surfaces.

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