Evolution of plasmonic response in growing silver thin films with pre-percolation non-local conduction and emittance drop

IOP Publishing
Publication Type:
Journal Article
Journal of Physics D: Applied Physics, 2011, 44 (25), pp. 1 - 8
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The optical response of growing silver thin films undergoes a transition dominated by three distinct plasmonic modes, two localized and one delocalized. Their admix as a function of added mass is analysed. The onset of the delocalized or Drude mode occurs before the sharp electrical percolation transition so optically the full insulator-metal transition is broadened. A scaling explanation supported by images shows Ag islands only have to link up over 200-300 nm to yield partial delocalization. The localized modes are (i) from silver nano-islands and (ii) a transitional anomalous mode, peaking near the dc critical percolation point, from islands surrounded by network. Growing silver within a multilayer oxide stack is compared with that on glass. The transition in thermal emittance matches that in the delocalized mode. Its broadening enables practical tuning of intermediate emittance by varying mass.
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