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Title page for ETD etd-11302012-132705

Type of Document Master's Thesis
Author Coppens, Zachary Joseph
Author's Email Address zjcoppens@gmail.com
URN etd-11302012-132705
Title Probing and controlling photothermal heat generation in plasmonic nanostructures
Degree Master of Science
Department Mechanical Engineering
Advisory Committee
Advisor Name Title
Greg Walker Committee Chair
Jason Valentine Committee Chair
Deyu Li Committee Member
  • thermoplasmonic design
  • nanoantenna
  • Heat generation
  • thermographic phosphor
Date of Defense 2012-11-29
Availability unrestricted
In the emerging field of thermoplasmonics, Joule heating associated with optically resonant plasmonic structures is exploited to generate nanoscale thermal hotspots. The ability to control thermal processes at the nanoscale level has opened the door for several promising applications in medicine, chemical catalysis, and data storage. In the present study, new methods for designing and thermally probing thermoplasmonic structures are reported. A general design rationale, based on Babinet’s principle, is developed for understanding how the complementary version of ideal electromagnetic antennas can yield efficient nanoscale heat sources with maximized current density. Using this methodology, it is shown that diabolo antenna geometries are more suitable for heat generation compared with their more well-known complementary structure, the bow-tie antenna. A new thermal microscopy method based on the temperature dependent photoluminescence lifetime of thin-film thermographic phosphors is also developed to experimentally characterize the thermal response of various antenna designs. Data from finite-difference time-domain simulations and the experimental temperature measurements are used to confirm the validity of the design rationale. The thermal microscopy technique, with its robust sensing method, could overcome some of the drawbacks of current micro/nanoscale temperature measurement schemes.
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