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Plasmonics: Electromagnetic Energy Transfer and Switching in Nanoparticle Chain-Arrays Below the Diffraction Limit

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  21 March 2011

Mark L. Brongersma
Affiliation:
Thomas J. Watson Laboratory of Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA 91125
John W. Hartman
Affiliation:
Thomas J. Watson Laboratory of Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA 91125
Harry H. Atwater
Affiliation:
Thomas J. Watson Laboratory of Applied Physics, California Institute of Technology, Pasadena CA 91125
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Abstract

A model is given for the transport of electromagnetic energy through structures that consist of chains of closely spaced metal nanoparticles. This transport relies on the near-field electrodynamic interaction between metal particles that sets up coupled plasmon modes. The model predicts that the propagation is coherent and the group velocities can exceed typical saturation velocities of electrons in semiconductors (≈ 105 m/s). Furthermore, it is shown that in these structures propagation of energy around sharp corners (bending radius << the wavelength of visible light) is possible at high efficiency. This efficiency is a strong function of the frequency and polarization direction of the plasmon mode. The operation of a plasmon switch is modeled, in which plasmon waves can be switched or modulated. Finally, suggestions are given for the choice of metal particle and host material.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 1999

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