J.R. Sánchez-Valencia, J. Toudert, A. Borrás, C. López-Santos, A. Barranco, I.O. Feliu, A.R. González-Elipe
Plasmonics, 5 (2010) 241-250
doi: 10.1007/s11468-010-9139-6

This work reports an easy-to-handle method for growing two-dimensional assemblies of Ag nanostructures presenting a tunable in-plane optical anisotropy. Ag is deposited by DC sputtering in an Ar plasma at room temperature onto bundled nanocolumnar SiO2 thin films grown by glancing angle physical vapor deposition. In contrast with previously reported processes involving the grazing angle deposition of the metal, DC sputtering is performed at normal incidence. By varying the deposition angle of SiO2 and the Ar pressure, it was possible to tune the deposited amount of Ag and thus the topology of the Ag deposit from isolated spherical Ag nanoparticles with isotropic optical properties to strongly dichroic Ag nanostripes oriented along the bundling direction of the SiO2 nanocolumns. Based on simple calculations taking into account the shadowing effects during metal deposition, it is proposed that the width and shape of the tip of the bundled SiO2 nanocolumns influence significantly the metal local atom flux arriving to them and thus the final structure of the deposit.

Tunable In-Plane Optical Anisotropy of Ag Nanoparticles Deposited by DC Sputtering onto SiO2 Nanocolumnar Films
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