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Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Mathematisch-Naturwissen­schaft­liche Fakultät - Nanooptik

Günter Kewes, Rogelio Rodriguez-Oliveros, Kathrin Höfner, Alexander Kuhlicke, Oliver Benson, and Kurt Busch (2014)

A fully nanoscopic dielectric laser


In this article, we introduce the concept of a dielectric nanolaser that is nanoscopic in all spatial dimensions. Our proposal is based on dielectric nanoparticles of high refractive index, e.g., silicon, acting as a (passive) cavity (without intrinsic gain) that is decorated with a thin film of organic gain media. Its resonance frequencies can be tuned over the entire visible range and bright and dark modes can be addressed. So called "magnetic" modes can be utilized, which makes this dielectric nanolaser a complementary source of coherent nearfields similar to the surface plasmon laser (which exploits electric modes). The small intrinsic losses in silicon yield relatively high quality factors and low non-radiative decay rates of emitters close to the cavity, both of which will lead to low thresholds. As we show in this work, the dielectric nanolaser exhibits certain advantages relative to nanowire lasers and spasers, such as reduced laser threshold, short switch-on times, size and design flexibility. The dielectric nanolaser is compatible with standard lithographic fabrication approaches and its relative simple design may allow for easy testing and realization of the concept. Thus, the silicon nanolaser might soon find many applications in nanooptics and metamaterials.

silicon, plasmonics, nanolaser, silicon lasers