Nanoassembly of quantum emitters in hexagonal boron nitride and gold nanospheres

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Journal Article
Nanoscale, 2018, 10 (5), pp. 2267 - 2274
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© 2018 The Royal Society of Chemistry. The assembly of quantum nanophotonic systems with plasmonic resonators is important for fundamental studies of single photon sources as well as for on-chip information processing. In this work, we demonstrate the controllable nanoassembly of gold nanospheres with ultra-bright narrow-band quantum emitters in 2D layered hexagonal boron nitride (hBN). We utilize an atomic force microscope (AFM) tip to precisely position gold nanospheres to close proximity to the quantum emitters and observe the resulting emission enhancement and fluorescence lifetime reduction. The extreme emitter photostability permits analysis at high excitation powers, and delineation of absorption and emission enhancement caused by the plasmonic resonators. A fluorescence enhancement of over 300% is achieved experimentally for quantum emitters in hBN, with a radiative quantum efficiency of up to 40% and a saturated count rate in excess of 5 × 106 counts per s. Our results are promising for the future employment of quantum emitters in hBN for integrated nanophotonic devices and plasmonic based nanosensors.
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