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Ultraconfined plasmons in atomically thin crystalline silver nanostructures
Version 2 2023-06-08, 13:03
Version 1 2023-03-23, 16:01
preprintposted on 2023-06-08, 13:03 authored by Vahagn Mkhitaryan, Andrew P. Weber, Saad Abdullah, Laura Fernández, Zakaria M. Abd El-Fattah, Ignacio Piquero-Zulaica, Hitesh Agarwal, Kevin García Díez, 3 Frederik Schiller, J. Enrique Ortega, F. Javier García de Abajo
The ability to confine light down to atomic scales is critical for the development of applications in optoelectronics and optical sensing as well as for the exploration of nanoscale quantum phenomena. Plasmons in metallic nanostructures can achieve this type of confinement, although fabrication imperfections down to the subnanometer scale hinder actual developments. Here, we demonstrate narrow plasmons in atomically thin crystalline silver nanostructures fabricated by prepatterning silicon substrates and epitaxially depositing silver films of just a few atomic layers in thickness. Combined with on-demand lateral shaping, this procedure allows for an unprecedented control over optical field confinement in the near-infrared spectral region. Specifically, we observe fundamental and higher-order plasmons featuring extreme spatial confinement and high-quality factors that reflect the crystallinity of the metal. Our approach holds potential for the design and exploitation of atomic-scale nanoplasmonic devices in optoelectronics, sensing, and quantum-physics applications.