Rice University scientists develop method to make multifunctional plasmonic nanostructures
Individual nanoscale nuggets of gold, copper, aluminum, silver and other metals that capture light’s energy and put it to work are being employed by Rice University scientists who have discovered a way to build multifunctional nanoscale structures. The structures have an aluminum core and are dotted with even smaller metallic islands. The materials all sustain localized surface plasmon resonances, collective oscillations of the electrons inside the nanostructure that activate when light hits the particle.
An animation shows the position of hundreds of ruthenium nano-islands on a single aluminum nanocrystal. Rice University scientists combined aluminum nanoparticles and smaller metal particles to create versatile plasmonic nanostructures. The technique allows for customizable surface chemistry and reactivity in one material. (Credit: Rice University/University of Cambridge)