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Ultrafast nonlinear dynamics of surface plasmon polaritons in gold nanowires due to the intrinsic nonlinearity of metals

MPS-Authors
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Marini,  A.
Biancalana Research Group, Research Groups, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Lee,  H. W.
Russell Division, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Chang,  W.
Russell Division, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Schmidt,  M. A.
Russell Division, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Russell,  P. St J.
Russell Division, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Biancalana,  F.
Biancalana Research Group, Research Groups, Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light, Max Planck Society;

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Citation

Marini, A., Conforti, M., Della Valle, G., Lee, H. W., Tran, T. X., Chang, W., et al. (2013). Ultrafast nonlinear dynamics of surface plasmon polaritons in gold nanowires due to the intrinsic nonlinearity of metals. NEW JOURNAL OF PHYSICS, 15: 013033. doi:10.1088/1367-2630/15/1/013033.


Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-002D-67BF-0
Abstract
Starting from first principles, we theoretically model the nonlinear temporal dynamics of gold-based plasmonic devices resulting from the heating of their metallic components. At optical frequencies, the gold susceptibility is determined by the interband transitions around the X, L points in the first Brillouin zone, and thermo-modulational effects ensue from Fermi smearing of the electronic energy distribution in the conduction band. As a consequence of light-induced heating of the conduction electrons, the optical susceptibility becomes nonlinear. In this paper we describe, for the first time to our knowledge, the effects of the thermo-modulational nonlinearity of gold on the propagation of surface plasmon polaritons guided on gold nanowires. We introduce a novel nonlinear Schrodinger-like equation to describe pulse propagation in such nanowires, and we predict the appearance of an intense spectral red-shift caused by the delayed thermal response.