Surpassing Single Line Width Active Tuning with Photochromic Molecules Coupled to Plasmonic Nanoantennas.
Active plasmonic nanostructures with tunable resonances promise to enable smart materials with multiple functionalities, on-chip spectral-based imaging and low-power optoelectronic devices. A variety of tunable materials have been integrated with plasmonic structures, however, the tuning range in the visible regime has been limited to less than the line width of the resonance resulting in small on/off ratios. Here we demonstrate dynamic tuning of plasmon resonances up to 71 nm through multiple cycles by incorporating photochromic molecules into plasmonic nanopatch antennas. Exposure to ultraviolet (UV) light switches the molecules into a photoactive state enabling dynamic control with on/off ratios up to 9.2 dB and a tuning figure of merit up to 1.43, defined as the ratio between the spectral shift and the initial line width of the plasmonic resonance. Moreover, the physical mechanisms underlying the large spectral shifts are elucidated by studying over 40 individual nanoantennas with fundamental resonances from 550 to 720 nm revealing good agreement with finite-element simulations.
Wilson, WM; Stewart, JW; Mikkelsen, MH
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