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Proceedings Paper

Optical switching of nematic liquid crystal film arising from induced electric field of localized surface plasmon resonance
Author(s): Makiko T. Quint; Silverio Delgado; John H. Paredes; Linda S. Hirst; Sayantani Ghosh
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Paper Abstract

We have developed an all-optical method to control the in- and out-of-plane spatial orientation of nematic liquid crystal (NLC) molecules by leveraging the highly localized electric fields produced in the near-field regime of gold nanoparticle (AuNP) layers. A 1-2 micron thick NLC film is deposited on a close-packed drop-cast AuNP layer, excited with tunable optical sources and the transmission of white light through it analyzed using polarization optics as a function of incident light wavelength, excitation power and sample temperature. Our findings, supported by simulations using discrete-dipole approximations, establish the optical switching effect to be repeatable, reversible, spectrally-selective, operational over a broad temperature range, including room temperature, and requiring very small on-resonance excitation intensity (0.3 W/cm2). For the case of the in-plane switching we have additionally demonstrated that controlling the incident excitation polarization can continuously vary the alignment of the NLC molecules, allowing for grayscale transmission.

Paper Details

Date Published: 28 August 2015
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 9547, Plasmonics: Metallic Nanostructures and Their Optical Properties XIII, 954729 (28 August 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2186197
Show Author Affiliations
Makiko T. Quint, Univ. of California, Merced (United States)
Silverio Delgado, Univ. of California, Merced (United States)
John H. Paredes, Univ. of California, Merced (United States)
Linda S. Hirst, Univ. of California, Merced (United States)
Sayantani Ghosh, Univ. of California, Merced (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9547:
Plasmonics: Metallic Nanostructures and Their Optical Properties XIII
Allan D. Boardman; Din Ping Tsai, Editor(s)

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