Reconfigurable nanoantennas using electron-beam manipulation

Brian J. Roxworthy, Abdul M. Bhuiya, Xin Yu, Edmond K.C. Chow, Kimani C. Toussaint

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Plasmonic nanoantennas have been of increasing interest due to their ability to confine and enhance electric fields in deep sub-wavelength volumes, leading to large near-field optical forces and high refractive index sensitivity. Recently, to enhance the response for sensor applications, metal nanoantennas have been fabricated on pillars. An overlooked consequence of this elevated geometry is the introduction of the mechanical properties, for example, stiffness, as a tunable degree of freedom. Here we demonstrate pillar-bowtie nanoantenna arrays, fabricated on optically transparent SiO 2, as a candidate system that couples intrinsic mechanical and electromagnetic degrees of freedom via gradient forces. We show that using a standard scanning electron microscope, individual nanoantenna gap sizes can be controllably tuned down to 5 €‰nm, a factor of ∼4 × smaller than what is currently achievable using conventional electron-beam lithography. This approach opens new avenues for fabricating reconfigurable nanoantennas that can inform exciting photonic applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4427
JournalNature communications
StatePublished - Jul 14 2014

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Chemistry
  • General Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
  • General Physics and Astronomy


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