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Nanotechnology Spotlight

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Showing Spotlights 65 - 72 of 76 in category Nano-optics, -Photonics (newest first):

 

Focused ion beam milling of nanocavities could lead to photon-on-demand light sources

Artificial opals are gemstones that are of considerable scientific and technological interest as photonic crystals, as components of light sources, solar cells, and chemical sensors. They are conveniently made from periodic stackings of nanospheres. It would be exciting if one could fabricate optical cavities in these photonic crystals by removing, or adding high dielectric material to a single unit cell in the structure. These optical cavities would localize light that potentially enables the fabrication of high-resolution miniature on-chip sensors, or even qubits for quantum computers. Previously, such controlled modification of the nanostructure of a single colloid in an opal has not been achieved. Now, researchers in The Netherlands developed a method for realizing both single and arrays of material cavities, or defects, in individual colloids on the surface of silicon dioxide artificial opals by a focused ion beam milling technique. This research could ultimately lead to the fabrication of a photon-on-demand light source.

Posted: Nov 30th, 2006

Butterflies provide clues for replacing color pigments with photonic nanocrystals

Photonic crystals are attractive optical materials for controlling and manipulating the flow of light. They can be engineered to produce a variety of optical filtering functions. The growing efforts of physicists and materials scientists to fabricate photonic (nano)crystals were motivated mainly by the potential application of these materials in optical computing, the manufacturing of more efficient lasers, and other exciting new phenomena, like those arising from the application of disturbances such as shock waves. The manufacturing of large-area photonic crystals operating in the visible spectrum is still a challenging and expensive task, given present-day laboratory techniques. However, as with so many other materials, nature has already found a solution. Because they are ready made, common in nature, and because they show a very high complexity, biological photonic-crystal structures will be an essential tool for building a useful knowledge of inhomogeneous optical media.

Posted: Sep 21st, 2006

Electrochromic devices based on tungsten oxide

An electrochromic display is one of the most attractive candidates for paper-like displays, so called electronic paper, which will be the next generation display, owing to attributes such as thin and flexible materials, low-power consumption, and fast switching times.

Posted: Jun 19th, 2006

Superior optical labels made from diamond nanoparticles

Optical labeling is an important tool in biological imaging because it offers superb discrimination between the sites of interest and the crowded background of a biological specimen. Diamonds nanocrystals have several advantages over other optical labels and open new opportunities in optical imaging, especially in applications where the size of optical labels represents an important parameter.

Posted: Jun 1st, 2006

Quantum dots in a tube could open a new chapter in opto-electronics

Researchers in Germany managed to integrate quantum dots (QD) into the walls of nano- and microtubes. This novel structure serves as a quantum light emitter as well as optical waveguide. This represents a major step toward the realization of flexible high quality factor optical resonators based on tubes.

Posted: Apr 11th, 2006

One step closer to industrial fabrication of photonic crystal devices

Researchers in the UK and Germany told Nanowerk that they developed a simple, fast and efficient method for fabricating metallic photonic crystals. This new method opens the door to a number of applications in telecommunication, all-optical switching, sensors, and semiconductor devices.

Posted: Mar 8th, 2006