META 2021, META'12

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Improved Plasmonic Films via Template Stripping
David J Norris

Last modified: 2011-12-12


Template stripping can provide a high-throughput method for producing patterned metallic films for plasmonics.  In general, template stripping utilizes the fact that coinage metals (e.g., silver, gold, and copper) will wet silicon substrates well but adhere poorly.  Thus, by depositing such a metal on a patterned silicon wafer, the metal film can then be “stripped” off to reveal a smooth patterned interface that was templated by the substrate.  Because the silicon substrate can then be reused, a simple solution for preparing many copies of the same plasmonic structure is obtained. The silicon wafers can also be patterned easily with a variety of techniques developed for microelectronics. Previously, we demonstrated that silver interfaces obtained via this approach could be ultrasmooth and exhibit surface plasmon propagation lengths approaching what is expected theoretically. Here we will demonstrate several additional benefits.  First, because of reduced roughness, the dielectric function of the metal is considerably improved.  Second, the approach can be extended beyond the coinage metals to refractory metals, semiconductors, and oxides, enabling a variety of structures for different applications.  Finally, we will discuss the use of template stripping to reduce and even eliminate crystalline grain boundaries. Throughout the talk, we will use the fabrication of photovoltaic and thermophotovoltaic devices as examples.