Deep subwavelength integration of high-definition plasmonic nano-structures is of key importance for the development of future optical nanocircuitry. So far the experimental realization of proposed extended plasmonic networks remains challenging, mainly due to the multi-crystallinity of commonly used thermally evaporated gold layers. Resulting structural imperfections in individual circuit elements drastically reduce the yield of functional integrated nanocircuits. Here we demonstrate the use of very large but thin chemically grown single-crystalline gold flakes. After immobilization on any arbitrary surface, they serve as an ideal basis for focused-ion beam milling. We present high-definition ultra-smooth gold nanostructures with reproducible nanosized features over micrometer lengthscales. By comparing multi- and single-crystalline optical antennas we prove that the latter have superior optical properties which are in good agreement with numerical simulations.
Huang, J S; Geisler, P; Bruening, C; Kern, J; Prangsma, J C; Wu, X; Feichtner, Thorsten; Ziegler, J; Weinmann, P; Kamp, M; Forchel, A; Hecht, B;  Biagioni, P 
- Wilhelm-Conrad-Roentgen-Center for Complex Material Systems, University of Wuerzburg (Germany)
- CNISM, Dipartimento di Fisica, Politecnico di Milano (Italy)