Keywords

Plasmonic, nonlinear optics, photothermal, cascaded field enhancement

Abstract

The continued development of integrated photonic devices requires low-power, small volume all-optical modulators. The weak nonlinear optical response of conventional optical materials requires the use of high intensities and large interaction volumes in order to achieve significant light modulation, hindering the miniaturization of all-optical switches and the development of lightweight transmission optics with nonlinear optical response. These challenges may be addressed using plasmonic nanostructures due to their unique ability to confine and enhance electric fields in sub-wavelength volumes. The ultrafast nonlinear response of free electrons in such plasmonic structures and the fast thermal nonlinear optical response of metal nanoparticles, as well as the plasmon enhanced nonlinear Kerr-type response of the host material surrounding the nanostructures could allow ultrafast all-optical modulation with low modulation energy. In this thesis, we investigate the linear and nonlinear optical response of engineered effective media containing coupled metallic nanoparticles. The fundamental interactions in systems containing coupled nanoparticles with size, shape, and composition dissimilarity, are evaluated analytically and numerically, and it is demonstrated that under certain conditions the achieved field enhancement factors can exceed the single-particle result by orders of magnitude in a process called cascaded plasmon resonance. It is demonstrated that these conditions can be met in systems containing coupled nanospheres, and in systems containing non-spherical metal nanoparticles that are compatible with common top-down nanofabrication methods such as electron beam lithography and nano-imprint lithography. We show that metamaterials based on such cascaded plasmon resonance structures can produce enhanced nonlinear optical refraction and absorption compared to that of conventional plasmonic nanostructures. Finally, it is demonstrated that the thermal nonlinear optical response of metal nanoparticles can be enhanced in carefully engineered heterogeneous nanoparticle clusters, potentially enabling strong and fast thermal nonlinear optical response in system that can be produced in bulk through chemical synthesis.

Notes

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Graduation Date

2014

Semester

Fall

Advisor

Kik, Pieter

Degree

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)

College

College of Optics and Photonics

Department

Optics and Photonics

Degree Program

Optics and Photonics

Format

application/pdf

Identifier

CFE0005556

URL

http://purl.fcla.edu/fcla/etd/CFE0005556

Language

English

Release Date

December 2014

Length of Campus-only Access

None

Access Status

Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)

Subjects

Dissertations, Academic -- Optics and Photonics; Optics and Photonics -- Dissertations, Academic

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