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Title: Nanoscale mapping of plasmon and exciton in ZnO tetrapods coupled with Au nanoparticles

Metallic nanoparticles can be used to enhance optical absorption or emission in semiconductors, thanks to a strong interaction of collective excitations of free charges (plasmons) with electromagnetic fields. Herein we present direct imaging at the nanoscale of plasmon-exciton coupling in Au/ZnO nanostructures by combining scanning transmission electron energy loss and cathodoluminescence spectroscopy and mapping. The Au nanoparticles (~30 nm in diameter) are grown in-situ on ZnO nanotetrapods by means of a photochemical process without the need of binding agents or capping molecules, resulting in clean interfaces. Interestingly, the Au plasmon resonance is localized at the Au/vacuum interface, rather than presenting an isotropic distribution around the nanoparticle. Moreover, on the contrary, a localization of the ZnO signal has been observed inside the Au nanoparticle, as also confirmed by numerical simulations.
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  1. CNR-IMEM, Parma (Italy)
  2. Univ. of Antwerp, Antwerp (Belgium)
  3. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Publication Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Grant/Contract Number:
Accepted Manuscript
Journal Name:
Scientific Reports
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 6; Journal ID: ISSN 2045-2322
Nature Publishing Group
Research Org:
Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
USDOE Office of Science (SC), Basic Energy Sciences (BES) (SC-22)
Country of Publication:
United States
characterization and analytical techniques; nanoparticles