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Published November 14, 2014 | Supplemental Material
Journal Article Open

Plasmoelectric potentials in metal nanostructures


The conversion of optical power to an electrical potential is of general interest for energy applications, and is typically obtained via optical excitation of semiconductor materials. Here, we introduce a new method using an all-metal geometry, based on the plasmon resonance in metal nanostructures. In arrays of Au nanoparticles on an indium-tin-oxide substrate and arrays of 100-nm-diameter holes in 20-nm-thick Au films on a glass substrate, we show negative and positive surface potentials during monochromatic irradiation at wavelengths below or above the plasmon resonance respectively. We observe such plasmoelectric surface potentials as large as 100 mV under 100 mW/cm^2 illumination. Plasmoelectric devices may enable development of entirely new types of all-metal optoelectronic devices that can convert light into electrical energy.

Additional Information

© 2014 American Association for the Advancement of Science. Received for publication 7 July 2014. Accepted for publication 16 October 2014. Published Online October 30 2014. The authors gratefully acknowledge support from the Department of Energy, Office of Science under grant DE-FG02-07ER46405 (MS and HAA) and for facilities of the DOE "Light-Material Interactions in Energy Conversion" Energy Frontier Research Center (DE-SC0001293). Work at AMOLF is part of the research program of the Foundation for Fundamental Research on Matter, which is financially supported by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research (NWO). It is also supported by the European Research Counsel. One of us (AB) acknowledges support from an NSF Graduate Research Fellowship. The data are archived in the laboratory of HAA. Helpful discussions with E. Kosten, V. Brar, D. Callahan, M. Deceglie, A. Leenheer, J. Fakonas, R. van Roij, B.M. Mulder and H.J. Bakker are gratefully acknowledged.

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