Nanoparticle Shape Determines Dynamics of Targeting Nanoconstructs on Cell Membranes

Nanoparticle shape plays an important role in targeted drug delivery. Investigations of how differences in morphology affect nanoparticle-cell interactions at the single-particle level—especially internalization and cellular trafficking—are critical yet limited. Using dual-mode optical imaging tools, we compared the single-particle dynamics of aptamer-conjugated gold nanostars and gold nanospheres on cancer cell membranes. Despite the protein corona […]

Quantum Dot-Plasmon Lasing with Controlled Polarization Patterns

The tailored spatial polarization of coherent light beams is important for applications ranging from microscopy to biophysics to quantum optics. Miniaturized light sources are needed for integrated, on-chip photonic devices with desired vector beams; however, this issue is unresolved because most lasers rely on bulky optical elements to achieve such polarization control. We developed quantum […]

Reconfigurable Graphene Wrinkles with Area-Specific Structural Features

Graphene exhibit unique electronic properties and mechanical flexibility that are beneficial for next-generation electronics. Crumpling graphene on elastomer sheets can engineer the properties depending on wavelength and orientation while maintaining structural integrity. However, tunability of nanotextures is limited because this process can only produce globally uniform features and graphene typically cracks in delaminated regions. By […]

Continuous-wave Upconverting Lasing from Sub-wavelength Plasmons

Continuous-wave (CW) lasing at room temperature is critical for integration with opto-electronic devices and optimal modulation of optical interactions. Plasmonic nanocavities integrated with gain can generate coherent light at sub-wavelength scales, while insufficient gain with respect to losses and thermal instabilities in nanocavities has limited all nanoscale lasers to pulsed pump sources and/or low-temperature operation. […]

Graphene Wrinkles Enable Spatially Defined Chemistry

Selectively functionalized graphene can realize spatially defined properties that are highly desirable for atom-thin devices. We developed a scalable approach to realize area-specific properties in graphene using multiscale wrinkles. Patterned areas of graphene nanowrinkles and crumples followed by a single-process plasma reaction resulted in substrates with regions having different fluorination levels. Because the reduction in […]

Lattice-Resonance Metalenses for Fully Reconfigurable Imaging

Metalenses are compact lensing components based on rationally designed nanoscale building blocks. These planar devices are crucial for miniaturized imaging systems that can be integrated into portable electronic and optical devices. However, existing metalenses have fixed structures of hard materials that cannot be reshaped once fabricated and cannot adjust their focal spots adaptively based on […]

Stretchable nanolasers from hybrid quadrupole plasmons

We achieved mechanical control of the lasing color by exploiting a lasing cavity based on periodic arrays of nanoparticles in a stretchable, polymer matrix. This materials system could achieve reversibly tunable lasing as well as superior sensitivity to applied strain. Large metal nanoparticles arranged in a lattice produce high-quality hybrid quadrupole plasmon modes that are […]

Detecting and Visualizing Reaction Intermediates of Anisotropic Nanoparticle Growth

Understanding the underlying mechanism for the synthesis of metallic nanoparticles is crucial for strategic creation of desirable particles. We have recently designed a correlative approach to detect, visualize, and characterize intermediate species during a seedless, anisotropic nanoparticle synthesis. We showed how EPR radical signals of intermediates during a nanoparticle reaction can be combined with optical […]

Band-Edge Engineering for Controlled Multi-Modal Nanolasing in Plasmonic Superlattices

Miniaturized lasers enable applications in on-chip optical communication, medical imaging, and nanoscale optical displays. Compared to traditional lasers, plasmonic nanolasers can break the diffraction limit and support ultrasmall mode volumes, but unwanted multi-modal nanolasing exhibits both uncontrolled mode spacing and output behavior. Single band-edge states can trap slow light and function as high-quality optical feedback […]

Evolutionary Design and Prototyping of Single Crystalline Titanium Nitride Lattice Optics

Plasmonic metasurfaces—structured materials with subwavelength units—are of interest for applications ranging from high resolution imaging to 3D holography. Integrated devices, however, are challenging to achieve because traditional plasmonic materials such as Ag or Au are not compatible with semiconductor processing. Recently, TiN has received attention as an unconventional plasmonic material because of its potential CMOS […]