Ultrasmall all-optical plasmonic switch and its application to superresolution imaging

Hsueh Yu Wu, Yen Ta Huang, Po Ting Shen, Hsuan Lee, Ryosuke Oketani, Yasuo Yonemaru, Masahito Yamanaka, Satoru Shoji, Kung Hsuan Lin, Chih Wei Chang, Satoshi Kawata, Katsumasa Fujita, Shi Wei Chu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


Because of their exceptional local-field enhancement and ultrasmall mode volume, plasmonic components can integrate photonics and electronics at nanoscale, and active control of plasmons is the key. However, all-optical modulation of plasmonic response with nanometer mode volume and unity modulation depth is still lacking. Here we show that scattering from a plasmonic nanoparticle, whose volume is smaller than 0.001 μm3, can be optically switched off with less than 100 1/4W power. Over 80% modulation depth is observed, and shows no degradation after repetitive switching. The spectral bandwidth approaches 100 nm. The underlying mechanism is suggested to be photothermal effects, and the effective single-particle nonlinearity reaches nearly 10-9 m2 /W, which is to our knowledge the largest record of metallic materials to date. As a novel application, the non-bleaching and unlimitedly switchable scattering is used to enhance optical resolution to λ /5 (λ /9 after deconvolution), with 100-fold less intensity requirement compared to similar superresolution techniques. Our work not only opens up a new field of ultrasmall all-optical control based on scattering from a single nanoparticle, but also facilitates superresolution imaging for long-term observation.

Original languageEnglish
Article number24293
JournalScientific reports
Publication statusPublished - Apr 11 2016
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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