Optically-Triggered Nanoscale Memory Effect in a Hybrid Plasmonic-Phase Changing Nanostructure

Dangyuan Lei, Kannatassen Appavoo, Filip Ligmajer, Yannick Sonnefraud, Richard F. Haglund, Stefan A. Maier

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

108 Citations (Scopus)


Nanoscale devices, such as all-optical modulators and electro-optical transducers, can be implemented in heterostructures that integrate plasmonic nanostructures with functional active materials. Here we demonstrate all-optical control of a nanoscale memory effect in such a heterostructure by coupling the localized surface plasmon resonance (LSPR) of gold nanodisk arrays to a phase-changing material (PCM), vanadium dioxide (VO2). By latching the VO2 in a distinct correlated metallic state during the insulator-to-metal transition (IMT), while concurrently exciting the hybrid nanostructure with one or more ultraviolet optical pulses, the entire phase space of this correlated state can be accessed optically to modulate the plasmon response. We find that the LSPR modulation depends strongly but linearly on the initial latched state, suggesting that the memory effect encoded in the plasmon resonance wavelength is linked to the strongly correlated electron states of the VO2. The continuous, linear variation of the electronic and optical properties of these model heterostructures opens the way to multiple design strategies for hybrid devices with novel optoelectronic functionalities, which can be controlled by an applied electric or optical field, strain, injected charge, or temperature.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1306-1313
Number of pages8
JournalACS Photonics
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 13 Aug 2015


  • metal nanoparticles
  • phase transformation
  • plasmonic memory effect
  • surface plasmons
  • vanadium dioxides

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Biotechnology
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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