Research Areas

Nanophotonic Materials and Devices : Plasmonics

Caltech People: Prof. Harry Atwater (APh), Dr. Henri Lezec, Dr. Domenico Pacifici, Julie Biteen, Jennifer Dionne, Carrie Ross, Luke Sweatlock

Collaborators: Prof. Albert Polman, Hans Mertens (AMOLF)


Plasmonics:

Light can be localized and manipulated in appropriately designed metallic and metallodielectric nanoparticle array structures. In particular, interesting phenomena occur near the plasmon frequency where optical extinction is resonantly enhanced, and at the plasma frequency where the real part of the dielectric constant changes sign. Due to their high reflection and absorption coefficients, metal structures have been generally overlooked as elements to guide, focus and switch light at visible and infrared wavelengths. However at the nanoscale the intriguing guiding and refractive properties of metal structures can be realized since the metal components become semitransparent due to their small size.


Emerging Research Areas:

1. Plasmonic Waveguides

The scaling of optical devices and components to their ultimate size limits will require that electromagnetic energy be guided on a scale below the diffraction limit and that information be guided around sharp corners with nanometer-scale radii of curvature. Plasmon waveguides are periodic chain arrays of metal nanoparticles which can localize light in guided modes whose size is a few percent of the optical wavelength. Such waveguides can enable efficient power transfer around sharp corners and may form the basis for nanoscale all-optical switches.


Click on images to stream FDTD movies. Downloading is available below.

Longitudinal Mode Propagation in Spherical Particles


Download 5.5MB, Quicktime Format



Transverse Mode Propagation in Spheroidal Particles

Notice the negative phase velocity as the envelope moves to the right in the transverse propagation example.

Download 11.5MB, Quicktime Format

Download Quicktime Player from Apple.


2. Plasmon Printing

The minimum feature size that can be obtained using conventional projection optical lithography is determined by the diffraction limit. Plasmon printing is a new approach to lithographic printing that takes advantage of the resonantly enhanced optical intensity in optical near field of metallic nanoparticles, and which could enable printing of deep subwavelength features using conventional photoresist and simple visible or ultraviolet light sources.



Available Presentations:

Plasmon Waveguides
Plasmon Printing


Available Publications:

Electronic modulation of infrared emissivity in graphene plasmonic resonators
Victor W Brar, Michelle C Sherrott, Luke A Sweatlock, Min Seok Jang, Laura Kim, Mansoo Choi, Harry A Atwater
arXiv (2014)


Experimental Demonstration of Enhanced Photon Recycling in Angle-Restricted GaAs Solar Cells
Emily D. Kosten, Brendan M. Kayes, and Harry A. Atwater
Energy & Environmental Science (2014)


Growth Mechanism and Electronic Structure of Zn3P2 on the Ga-rich GaAs(001) Surface
Seokmin Jeon, Jeffrey P. Bosco, Samantha S. Wilson, Steven J. Rozeveld, Hyungjun Kim, and Harry A. Atwater
Journal of Physical Chemistry C. (2014)


Hybrid Surface-Phonon-Plasmon Polariton Modes in Graphene/ Monolayer h‑BN Heterostructures
Victor W. Brar, Min Seok Jang, Michelle Sherrott, Seyoon Kim, Josue J. Lopez, Laura B. Kim, Mansoo Choi, and Harry Atwater
NanoLetters (2014)


Near-unity Broadband Absorption Designs for Semiconducting Nanowire Arrays via Localized Radial Mode Excitation
Katherine T. Fountaine, Christian G. Kendall, and Harry A. Atwater
Optics Express (2014)


Reply to 'On the thermodynamics of light trapping in solar cells'
Harry A Atwater, Albert Polman
Nature materials (2014)


Solar Energy Conversion via Hot Electron Internal Photoemission in Metallic Nanostructures: Efficiency Estimates
Andrew J. Leenheer, Prineha Narang, Nathan S. Lewis, and Harry A. Atwater
Journal of Applied Physics (2014)


Synthesis and Characterization of Plasmonic Resonant Guided Wave Networks
Stanley P. Burgos, Ho W. Lee, Eyal Feigenbaum, Ryan M. Briggs, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2014)


Tunable large resonant absorption in a midinfrared graphene Salisbury screen
Min Seok Jang, Victor W. Brar, Michelle C. Sherrott, Josue J. Lopez, Laura Kim, Seyoon Kim, Mansoo Choi, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review (2014)


Two-Plasmon Quantum Interference
James S. Fakonas, Hyunseok Lee, Yousif A. Kelaita, and Harry A. Atwater
Nature Photonics (2014)


Color Imaging via Nearest Neighbor Hole Coupling in Plasmonic Color Filters Integrated onto a Complementary Metal-Oxide Semiconductor Image Sensor
Stanley P. Burgos, Sozo Yokogawa, Harry A. Atwater
ACS Nano (2013)


Functional Plasmonic Nanocircuits with Low Insertion and Propagation Losses
Arian Kriesch, Stanley P. Burgos, Daniel Ploss, Hannes Pfeifer, Harry A. Atwater, and Ulf Peschel
NanoLetters (2013)


Highly Confined Tunable Mid-Infrared Plasmonics in Graphene Nanoresonators
Victor W. Brar, Min Seok Jang, Michelle Sherrott, Josue J. Lopez, and Harry A. Atwater
ACS Nanoletters (2013)


Light Trapping in Ultrathin Silicon Photonic Crystal Superlattices with Randomly-Textured Dielectric Incouplers
Dennis M. Callahan, Kelsey A.W. Whitesell, Harry A. Atwater
Optics Express (2013)


Photolithographic Olefin Metathesis Polymerization
Raymond A. Weitekamp, Harry A. Atwater, and Robert H. Grubbs
Journal of the American Chemical Society (2013)


Pseudomorphic Growth and Strain Relaxation of α-Zn3P2 on GaAs(001) by Molecular Beam Epitaxy
Jeffrey P. Bosco, Gregory M. Kimball, Nathan S. Lewis, Harry A. Atwater
Journal of Crystal Growth (2013)


Quantum Optical Properties of a Dipole Emitter Coupled to an ɛ-near-zero Nanoscale Waveguide
Ruzan Sokhoyan and Harry A. Atwater
Optics Express (2013)


Towards an optimized all lattice-matched InAlAs/InGaAsP/InGaAs multijunction solar cell with efficiency >50%
Marina S. Leite, Robyn L. Woo, Jeremy N. Munday, Willian D. Hong, Shoghig Mesropian, Daniel C. Law, Harry A. Atwater
Applied Physics Letters (2013)


Dielectric based resonant guided wave networks
Eyal Feigenbaum, Harry A. Atwater
Optical Society of America (2012)


Efficient Coupler Between Silicon Photonic and Metal-insulator-silicon-metal Plasmonic Waveguides
A. Emboras, R. M. Briggs, A. Najar, S. Nambiar, C. Delacour, Ph. Grosse, E. Augendre, J. M. Fedeli, B. de Salvo, H. A. Atwater and R. Espiau de Lamaestre
Applied Physics Letters (2012)


Light Trapping Beyond the 4n2 Limit in Thin Waveguides
Jeremy N. Munday, Dennis M. Callahan, Harry A. Atwater
Applied Physics Letters (2012)


Plasmonic Color Filters for CMOS Image Sensor Applications
Sozo Yokogawa, Stan Burgos, Harry A. Atwater
NanoLetters (2012)


Broadband polarization-independent resonant light absorption using ultrathin plasmonic super absorbers
Koray Aydin, Vivian E. Ferry, Ryan M. Briggs, Harry A. Atwater
Nature Communications (2011)


Characterization of the tunable response of highly strained compliant optical metamaterials
Imogen M. Pryce, Koray Aydin, Yousif A. Kelaita, Ryan M. Briggs, Harry A. Atwater
Philosophical Transactions of The Royal Society A (2011)


Enhancing the Radiative Rate in III-V Semiconductor Plasmonic Core-Shell Nanowire Resonators
Carrie E. Hofmann, F. Javier Garcia de Abajo, Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2011)


Low-Loss Plasmonic Metamaterials
Alexandra Boltasseva, Harry A. Atwater
Science (2011)


Plasmonic Rainbow Trapping Structures for Light Localization and Spectrum Splitting
M.S. Jang, H.A. Atwater
PRL (2011)


Resonant Guided Wave Networks (Chapter 3)
Eyal Feigenbaum, Stanley Burgos, Harry A. Atwater
Photonic Crystals (2011)


A single-layer wide-angle negative-index metamaterial at visible frequencies
Stanley P. Burgos, Rene de Waele, Albert Polman, and Harry A. Atwater
Nature Materials (2010)


Efficient coupling between dielectric-loaded plasmonic and silicon photonic waveguides
Ryan M. Briggs, Jonathan Grandidier, Stanley P. Burgos, Eyal Feigenbaum, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2010)


Highly strained compliant optical metamaterials with large frequency tunability
Imogen M. Pryce*, Koray Aydin*, Yousif A. Kelaita, Ryan M. Briggs, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2010)


Negative refractive index in coaxial plasmon waveguides
Rene de Waele, Stanley P. Burgos, Harry A. Atwater, and Albert Polman
Optics Express (2010)


Programming of inhomogeneous resonant guided wave networks
Eyal Feigenbaum, Stanley P. Burgos, and Harry A. Atwater
Optics Express (2010)


Resonant Guided Wave Networks
Eyal Feigenbaum and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review Letters (2010)


Symmetry breaking and strong coupling in planar optical metamaterials
Koray Aydin, Imogen M. Pryce, and Harry A. Atwater
Optics Express (2010)


Time dependent behavior of a localized electron at a heterojunction boundary of graphene
Min Seok Jang, Hyungjun Kim, Harry A. Atwater, and William A. Goddard III
Applied Physics Letters (2010)


Tuning Wave Dispersion in Resonant Networks
Eyal Feigenbaum, Stanley Burgos, Harry A. Atwater
Optical Society of America (2010)


Unity-order index change in transparent conducting oxides at visible frequencies
Eyal Feigenbaum, Kenneth Diest, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2010)


Conjugated polymer/metal nanowire heterostructure plasmonic antennas
Deirdre M. O’Carroll, Carrie E. Hofmann, and Harry A. Atwater
Advanced Materials (2009)


Plasmon dispersion in coaxial waveguides from single-cavity optical transmission measurements
Rene de Waele, Stanley P. Burgos, Albert Polman, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2009)


plasMOStor: A Metal-Oxide-Si Field Effect Plasmonic Modulator
Jennifer A. Dionne, Kenneth Diest, Luke A. Sweatlock, Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2009)


Tunable Color Filters Based on Metal-Insulator-Metal Resonators
Kenneth Diest, Jennifer A. Dionne, Merrielle Spain, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2009)


Are negative index materials achievable with surface plasmon waveguides? A case study of three plasmonic geometries
Jennifer Dionne, Ewold Verhagen, Albert Polman, and Harry Atwater
Optics Express (2008)


Near field visualization of strongly confined surface plasmon polaritons in metal-insulator-metal waveguides
Ewold Verhagen, Jennifer Dionne, Laurens Kuipers, Harry Atwater, and Albert Polman
Nano Letters (2008)


Plasmonic Nanoparticle Enhanced Light Absorption in GaAs Solar Cells
Keisuke Nakayama, Katsuaki Tanabe, Harry A. Atwater
Applied Physics Letters (2008)


All-optical modulation by plasmonic excitation of CdSe quantum dots
Domenico Pacifici, Henri J. Lezec, and Harry A. Atwater
Nature Photonics (2007)


Plasmonic Modes of Annular Nanoresonators Imaged by Spectrally Resolved Cathodoluminescence
Carrie E. Hofmann, Ernst Jan R. Vesseur, Luke A. Sweatlock, Henri J. Lezec, F. Javier Garcia de Abajo, Albert Polman, and Harry A. Atwater
Nano Letters (2007)


Plasmonics: A shifting perspective
Domenico Pacifici
Nature Photonics (2007)


The Promise of Plasmonics
Harry A. Atwater
Scientific American (2007)


Highly confined photon transport in subwavelength metallic slot waveguides
Jennifer A. Dionne, Henri J. Lezec, and Harry A. Atwater
Nanoletters Vol. 6, Issue 9, pp. 1928-1932 (2006)


Plasmon slot waveguides: towards chip-scale propagation with subwavelength-scale localization
Jennifer A. Dionne, Luke A. Sweatlock, Albert Polman, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B 73, 035407 (2006)


Planar metal plasmon waveguides: frequency-dependent dispersion, propagation, localization, and loss beyond the free electron model
Jennifer A. Dionne, Luke A. Sweatlock, Albert Polman, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B 72, 075405 (2005)


Plasmonics: Localization and guiding of electromagnetic energy in metal/dielectric structures
Stefan A. Maier and Harry A. Atwater
Journal of Applied Physics (2005)


The New 'p-n Junction': Plasmonics Enables Photonic Access to the Nanoworld
Harry A. Atwater, Stefan Maier, Albert Polman, Jennifer A. Dionne, Luke A. Sweatlock
MRS Bulletin, pp 385-389 (2005)


Image resolution of surface-plasmon-mediated near-field focusing with planar metal films in three dimensions using finite-linewidth dipole sources
Pieter G. Kik, Stefan A. Maier, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B (2004)


Local detection of electromagnetic energy transport below the diffraction limit in metal nanoparticle plasmon waveguides
Stefan A. Maier, Pieter G. Kik, Harry A. Atwater, Sheffer Meltzer, Elad Harel, Bruce E. Koel, and Ari A.G. Requicha
Nature Materials (2003)


Local Detection of Electromagnetic Energy Transport Below the Diffraction Limit in Metal Nanoparticle Plasmon Waveguides
Stefan A. Meier, Pieter G. Kik, Harry A. Atwater, Sheffer Meltzer, Elad Harel, Bruce E. Koel, Ari A.G. Requicha
Nature Matierials (2003)


Microwave Analogue to a Subwavelength Plasmon Switch
Luke A. Sweatlock, Stefan A. Maier, and Harry A. Atwater
Proceedings of Electronic Components and Technology Conference (2003)


Optical pulse propagation in metal nanoparticle chain waveguides
Stefan A. Maier, Pieter G. Kik, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B (2003)


Electromagnetic energy transport along Yagi arrays
Stefan A. Maier, Mark L. Brongersma, Harry A. Atwater
Materials Science and Engineering C (2002)


Metal nanoparticle arrays for near field optical lithography
Pieter G. Kik, Andrea L. Martin, Stefan A. Maier, and Harry A. Atwater
Proceedings of SPIE 4810 (2002)


Observation of coupled plasmon-polariton modes in Au nanoparticle chain waveguides of different lengths: Estimation of waveguide loss
Stefan A. Maier, Pieter G. Kik, and Harry A. Atwater
Applied Physics Letters (2002)


Observation of coupled plasmon-polariton modes of plasmon waveguides for electromagnetic energy transport below the diffraction limit
Stefan A. Maier, Pieter G. Kik, Harry A. Atwater, Sheffer Meltzer, Ari A.G. Requicha, and Bruce E. Koel
Proceedings of SPIE 4810 (2002)


Observation of near-field coupling in metal nanoparticle chains using far-field polarization spectroscopy
Stefan A. Maier, Mark L. Brongersma, Pieter G. Kik, and Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B 65, 193408 (2002)


Electromagnetic energy transport along arrays of closely spaced metal rods as an analogue to plasmonic devices
Stefan A. Maier, Mark L. Brongersma, and Harry A. Atwater
Applied Physics Letters (2001)


Plasmonics - A Route to Nanoscale Optical Devices
Stefan A. Maier, Mark L. Brongersma, Pieter G. Kik, Sheffer Meltzer, Ari A. G. Requicha, Bruce E. Koel, and Harry A. Atwater
Advanced Materials (2001)


Electromagnetic energy transfer and switching in nanoparticle chain arrays below the diffraction limit
Mark L. Brongersma, John W. Hartman, Harry A. Atwater
Physical Review B (2000)