Optical chirality in plasmonic nanostructures

Optical chirality is an intriguing property of certain molecules, which allows them to interact with the spin angular momentum of the impinging light field. Due to their chiral geometry, they can distinguish between left- and right-hand circular polarization states or convert them into each other. Optical chirality is responsible for interesting optical phenomena such as circular birefringence, optical dichroism, and polarization rotation. Optical chirality has also been observed in plasmonic nanostructures, which could be regarded as artificial chiral molecules. We are interested in the fundamental and applied research of optical chirality in plasmonic metamaterials and individual plasmonic nanostructures. For example, we are interested in using chiral plasmonic metamaterials for efficient biomolecule detection [1], fabrication nanoscopic tridimensional chiral structures [2], and alternative methods for enabling chiral phenomena in achiral plasmonic structures [3,4].


[1] S. Murugkar, I. De Leon, M. Horton, H. Qassim, J. Leach and R. W. Boyd, Planar chiral metamaterials for biosensing applications, Proc. SPIE 8597, Plasmonics in Biology and Medicine X, 85970Y (2013).
[2] P. Wozniak, K. Höflich, S. Fritsch, S. Christiansen, P. Banzer, and G. Leuchs, Experimental Investigation of a Single Chrial Nano-Structure Made of a Composite Material, in 2013 Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics - International Quantum Electronics Conference, (Optical Society of America, 2013), paper CE_P_4.
[3] I. De Leon, M. J. Horton, S. A. Schulz, J. Upham, P. Banzer and R. W. Boyd, Strong, spectrally-tunable chirality in diffractive metasurfaces, Scientific Reports 5, 13034 (2015).
[4] P. Banzer, P. Wozniak, U. Mick, I. De Leon, and R. W. Boyd, Chiral optical response of planar and symmetric nanotrimers enabled by heteromaterial selection, Nature Comm. 7, 13117 (2016)

Project leaders:

Peter Banzer (MPL), peter.banzer@mpl.mpg.de
Israel De Leon (Monterrey Institute of Technology), ideleon@itesm.mx

Other senior researchers:

Robert W. Boyd (uOttawa)
Gerd Leuchs (MPL)
Jeremy Upham (uOttawa)