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Terahertz Nanoscopy of Plasmonic Resonances with a Quantum Cascade Laser

Degl'Innocenti, R; Wallis, R; Wei, B; Xiao, L; Kindness, SJ; Mitrofanov, O; Braeuninger-Weimer, P; ... Ritchie, DA; + view all (2017) Terahertz Nanoscopy of Plasmonic Resonances with a Quantum Cascade Laser. ACS Photonics , 4 (9) pp. 2150-2157. 10.1021/acsphotonics.7b00687. Green open access

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Abstract

We present a terahertz (THz) scattering near-field optical microscope (s-SNOM) based on a quantum cascade laser implemented as both source and detector in a self-mixing scheme utilizing resonant quartz tuning forks as a sensitive nanopositioning element. The homemade s-SNOM, based on a resonant tuning fork and metallic tip, operates in tapping mode with a spatial resolution of ∼78 nm. The quantum cascade laser is realized from a bound-to-continuum active region design with a central emission of ∼2.85 THz, which has been lens-coupled in order to maximize the feedback into the laser cavity. Accordingly, the spatial resolution corresponds to >λ/1000. The s-SNOM has been used to investigate a bidimensional plasmonic photonic crystal and to observe the optical resonant modes supported by coupled plasmonic planar antennas, showing remarkable agreement with the theoretical predictions. The compactness, unique sensitivity, and fast acquisition capability of this approach make the proposed s-SNOM a unique tool for solid-state investigations and biomedical imaging.

Type: Article
Title: Terahertz Nanoscopy of Plasmonic Resonances with a Quantum Cascade Laser
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1021/acsphotonics.7b00687
Publisher version: http://doi.org/10.1021/acsphotonics.7b00687
Language: English
Additional information: This version is the author accepted manuscript. For information on re-use, please refer to the publisher’s terms and conditions.
Keywords: Near-field microscopy, terahertz, plasmonics, photonic crystals, quantum cascade laser, self-mixing detection
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > UCL BEAMS > Faculty of Engineering Science > Dept of Electronic and Electrical Eng
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10039632
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