Plasmonics Goes Quantum

Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Alberta, Edmonton, Alberta T5K2M3, Canada.
Science (Impact Factor: 33.61). 10/2011; 334(6055):463-4. DOI: 10.1126/science.1211736
Source: PubMed


A combined plasmonics and metamaterials approach may allow light-matter interaction to be controlled at the single-photon level.

10 Reads
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: The effects of cavity quantum electrodynamics (QED), caused by the interaction of matter and the electromagnetic field in subwavelength resonant structures, have been the subject of intense research in recent years. The generation of coherent radiation by subwavelength resonant structures has attracted considerable interest, not only as a means of exploring the QED effects that emerge at small volume, but also for its potential in applications ranging from on-chip optical communication to ultrahigh-resolution and high-throughput imaging, sensing and spectroscopy. One such strand of research is aimed at developing the 'ultimate' nanolaser: a scalable, low-threshold, efficient source of radiation that operates at room temperature and occupies a small volume on a chip. Different resonators have been proposed for the realization of such a nanolaser--microdisk and photonic bandgap resonators, and, more recently, metallic, metallo-dielectric and plasmonic resonators. But progress towards realizing the ultimate nanolaser has been hindered by the lack of a systematic approach to scaling down the size of the laser cavity without significantly increasing the threshold power required for lasing. Here we describe a family of coaxial nanostructured cavities that potentially solve the resonator scalability challenge by means of their geometry and metal composition. Using these coaxial nanocavities, we demonstrate the smallest room-temperature, continuous-wave telecommunications-frequency laser to date. In addition, by further modifying the design of these coaxial nanocavities, we achieve thresholdless lasing with a broadband gain medium. In addition to enabling laser applications, these nanoscale resonators should provide a powerful platform for the development of other QED devices and metamaterials in which atom-field interactions generate new functionalities.
    Nature 02/2012; 482(7384):204-7. DOI:10.1038/nature10840 · 41.46 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Optical metamaterials and nanoplasmonics bridge the gap between conventional optics and the nanoworld. Exciting and technologically important capabilities range from subwavelength focusing and stopped light to invisibility cloaking, with applications across science and engineering from biophotonics to nanocircuitry. A problem that has hampered practical implementations have been dissipative metal losses, but the efficient use of optical gain has been shown to compensate these and to allow for loss-free operation, amplification and nanoscopic lasing. Here, we review recent and ongoing progress in the realm of active, gain-enhanced nanoplasmonic metamaterials. On introducing and expounding the underlying theoretical concepts of the complex interaction between plasmons and gain media, we examine the experimental efforts in areas such as nanoplasmonic and metamaterial lasers. We underscore important current trends that may lead to improved active imaging, ultrafast nonlinearities on the nanoscale or cavity-free lasing in the stopped-light regime.
    Nature Material 06/2012; 11(7):573-84. DOI:10.1038/nmat3356 · 36.50 Impact Factor
  • Source
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: In tiny metallic nanostructures, quantum confinement and nonlocal response change the collective plasmonic behavior with important consequences for e.g. field-enhancement and extinction cross sections. We report on our most recent developments of a real-space formulation of an equation-of-motion that goes beyond the common local-response approximation and use of Ohm's law as the central constitutive equation. The electron gas is treated within a semi-classical hydrodynamic model with the emergence of a new intrinsic length scale. We briefly review the new governing wave equations and give examples of applying the nonlocal framework to calculation of extinction cross sections and field enhancement in isolated particles, dimers, and corrugated surfaces.
    08/2012; 1475. DOI:10.1063/1.4750085
Show more


10 Reads
Available from