Terahertz quantum plasmonics at nanoscales and angstrom scales
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- Terahertz quantum plasmonics at nanoscales and angstrom scales
- Kang, Taehee; Bahk, Young-Mi; Kim, Dai-Sik
- Issue Date
- WALTER DE GRUYTER GMBH
- NANOPHOTONICS, v.9, no.2, pp.435 - 451
- Through the manipulation of metallic structures, light-matter interaction can enter into the realm of quantum mechanics. For example, intense terahertz pulses illuminating a metallic nanotip can promote terahertz field-driven electron tunneling to generate enormous electron emission currents in a subpicosecond time scale. By decreasing the dimension of the metallic structures down to the nanoscale and angstrom scale, one can obtain a strong field enhancement of the incoming terahertz field to achieve atomic field strength of the order of V/nm, driving electrons in the metal into tunneling regime by overcoming the potential barrier. Therefore, designing and optimizing the metal structure for high field enhancement are an essential step for studying the quantum phenomena with terahertz light. In this review, we present several types of metallic structures that can enhance the coupling of incoming terahertz pulses with the metals, leading to a strong modification of the potential barriers by the terahertz electric fields. Extreme nonlinear responses are expected, providing opportunities for the terahertz light for the strong light-matter interaction. Starting from a brief review about the terahertz field enhancement on the metallic structures, a few examples including metallic tips, dipole antenna, and metal nanogaps are introduced for boosting the quantum phenomena. The emerging techniques to control the electron tunneling driven by the terahertz pulse have a direct impact on the ultrafast science and on the realization of next-generation quantum devices.
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