Colloidal synthesis of nanopatch antennas for applications in plasmonics and nanophotonics


We present a method for colloidal synthesis of silver nanocubes and the use of these in combination with a smooth gold film, to fabricate plasmonic nanoscale patch antennas. This includes a detailed procedure for the fabrication of thin films with a well-controlled thickness over macroscopic areas using layer-by-layer deposition of polyelectrolyte polymers, namely poly(allylamine) hydrochloride (PAH) and polystyrene sulfonate (PSS). These polyelectrolyte spacer layers serve as a dielectric gap in between silver nanocubes and a gold film. By controlling the size of the nanocubes or the gap thickness, the plasmon resonance can be tuned from about 500 nm to 700 nm. Next, we demonstrate how to incorporate organic sulfo-cyanine5 carboxylic acid (Cy5) dye molecules into the dielectric polymer gap region of the nanopatch antennas. Finally, we show greatly enhanced fluorescence of the Cy5 dyes by spectrally matching the plasmon resonance with the excitation energy and the Cy5 absorption peak. The method presented here enables the fabrication of plasmonic nanopatch antennas with well-controlled dimensions utilizing colloidal synthesis and a layer-by-layer dip-coating process with the potential for low cost and large-scale production. These nanopatch antennas hold great promise for practical applications, for example in sensing, ultrafast optoelectronic devices and for high-efficiency photodetectors.

Publication Title

Journal of Visualized Experiments