Split-Wedge Antennas with Sub-5 nm Gaps for Plasmonic Nanofocusing
We present a novel plasmonic antenna structure, a split-wedge antenna, created by splitting an ultrasharp metallic wedge with a nanogap perpendicular to its apex. The nanogap can tightly confine gap plasmons and boost the local optical field intensity in and around these opposing metallic wedge tips. This three-dimensional split-wedge antenna integrates the key features of nanogaps and sharp tips, i.e., tight field confinement and three-dimensional nanofocusing, respectively, into a single platform. We fabricate split-wedge antennas with gaps that are as small as 1 nm in width at the wafer scale by combining silicon V-grooves with template stripping and atomic layer lithography. Computer simulations show that the field enhancement and confinement are stronger at the tip-gap interface compared to what standalone tips or nanogaps produce, with electric field amplitude enhancement factors exceeding 50 when near-infrared light is focused on the tip-gap geometry. The resulting nanometric hotspot volume is on the order of λ3/106. Experimentally, Raman enhancement factors exceeding 107 are observed from a 2 nm gap split-wedge antenna, demonstrating its potential for sensing and spectroscopy applications.
Chen, Xiaoshu; Lindquist, Nathan C.; Klemme, Daniel J.; Nagpal, Prashant; Norris, David J.; and Oh, Sang Hyun, "Split-Wedge Antennas with Sub-5 nm Gaps for Plasmonic Nanofocusing" (2016). Physics and Engineering Faculty Publications. 15.