ISMART - House 9 lasers

The main research topic lies on the cutting-edge field of plasmonics. Plasmonics has developed into a rapidly maturing and broad research field, and it is progressively becoming an enabling technology for a number of forefront research areas like photovoltaics, chemical and biological sensing, medical therapy, information technology and others. However the fabrication of plasmonic devices is technically challenged because:

  • a technique for precise control over the plasmon features has not been developed yet;
  • there is an engineering difficulty in delivering sharp nano-sized interfaces between metal and dielectrics; and
  • to date there is a lack of simultaneous atomic-scale control and large-scale character; current literature is lacking a systematic experimental study which creates a lack of feedback to technology for successful plasmonic large-scale applications.

This project aims to address the hurdles mentioned above through implementation of a processing technique that can be easily adopted in industry. This technique is laser annealing (LA), the process of irradiating a material to instantly alter its structure and properties. LA has already been demonstrated [1-3] to be a viable method for creating plasmonic systems, but with this project we aim at materialising its potential as a highly promising innovation in the field of plasmonics.

The objectives of Laser-Plasmon are:

1. To develop and optimize seed materials for plasmonic nanostructures.

2. To identify the most appropriate LA system design and LA processing parameters.

3. To investigate the underlying mechanisms that govern the alteration of the NPs and their surrounding environment’s structure and opto-electronic properties.

4. To deliver the currently missing link between materials, deposition techniques and LA process parameters, by means of an experimental library that would facilitate the future development of plasmonic applications.

Through the successful implementation of the project objectives we seek to establish the LA process as a tool for nanostructuring of metals and metal / dielectric complexes. We also want to create an experimental library of materials and processes that will be suitable for plasmonic applications.

References

1. C. Bazioti, G. P. Dimitrakopulos, Th. Kehagias, Ph. Komninou, A. Siozios, E. Lidorikis, D. C. Koutsogeorgis, P. Patsalas  Influence of laser annealing on the structural properties of sputtered AlN:Ag plasmonic nanocomposites, J. Mater. Sci. 49 3996 – 4006 (2014).

2. A. Siozios, H. Zoubos, N. Pliatsikas, D. C. Koutsogeorgis, G. Vourlias, E. Pavlidou, W. M. Cranton, P. Patsalas Growth and annealing strategies to control the microstructure of AlN:Ag nanocomposite films for plasmonic applications, Surf. Coat. Technol. 255 28-36 (2014).

3. A. Siozios, D. C. Koutsogeorgis, E. Lidorikis, G. P. Dimitrakopulos, Th. Kehagias, H. Zoubos, Ph. Komninou, W. M. Cranton, C. Kosmidis, P. Patsalas Optical encoding by Plasmon-Based patterning: Hard and Inorganic materials become photosensitive, Nano Lett. 12 (1) 259-263 (2012).