The Photonics and Plasmonics Group develops novel nanofabrication and nanomanufacturing techniques and the enabling measurement methods. The Group uses a combination of theory, simulation and experiment to measure the fundamental processes underlying both top-down and bottom-up nanofabrication, and to thereby work towards feasible approaches for high-volume nanomanufacturing. Experts in plasmonics, photonics and metamaterials are creating new ways of controlling light far below the diffraction limit for observing and manipulating nanostructures. Micro- and nano-electromechanical systems are being developed as multi-probe platforms for rapid nanofabrication and multi-mode characterization of materials and devices. Stochastic processes — ubiquitous at the nanoscale — are being harnessed for precise and accurate control of nanostructure position and orientation during bottom-up assembly processes.
Converting a single photon from one color, or frequency, to another is an essential tool in quantum communication, which harnesses the subtle correlations between the subatomic properties of photons (particles of light) to securely store and transmit information. Scientists at the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) have now developed a miniaturized version of a frequency converter, using technology similar to that used to make computer chips. More