The number of possible configurations for nano-optics and structured nanomaterials is so vast—an almost endless landscape of different metasurfaces made of dielectrics, semiconductors, or metals. No single class of materials or light-manipulating structures can solve all problems, and the abundance of possible configurations means that there may be many undiscovered nanomaterials out there with the exact properties that specific applications need.
At this year’s OSA Frontiers in Optics + Laser Science APS/DLS Conference, attendees will have a chance to catch up on recent discoveries in a range of patterned substrates—from topological photonics to reconfigurable plasmonics—during a Visionary Speaker session featuring Teri W. Odom, the Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison professor of chemistry, and chair of the Department of Chemistry at Northwestern University. She’ll also discuss some of the challenges ahead within these frontier areas.
“Perceived disadvantages of a material can be turned into an advantage,” said Odom. “For example, metals at optical frequencies are intrinsically lossy, and nanostructured materials tend to have broad resonances with low quality factors. Although plasmonic materials can concentrate electric fields more tightly in the near-field compared to their photonic counterparts, most work has focused on spectroscopic or chemical applications—not optics ones.”
Plasmonic analogues of photonic components also tend to perform poorly in a side-by-side comparison, but Odom noted that “photonic substrates also have challenges in that they are less tolerant of defects, and their optical response can deteriorate dramatically.” Her group’s solution is to combine the advantages of plasmonics (concentrated local fields) with photonics (high quality resonances) and create new classes of structured 2D lattices—and these arrays exhibit hybrid modes or lattice resonances with the best of both materials classes.
Posted: 9/12/2018 12:13:09 PM by
American Institute of Physics
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