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ACS Nano. 2015 Jun 23;9(6):5968-75. doi: 10.1021/acsnano.5b00716. Epub 2015 Apr 29.

Optics and Nonlinear Buckling Mechanics in Large-Area, Highly Stretchable Arrays of Plasmonic Nanostructures.

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†Departments of Materials Science and Engineering, Beckman Institute, and Frederick Seitz Materials Research Laboratory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Urbana, Illinois 61801, United States.
‡School of Electronic and Optical Engineering, Nanjing University of Science and Technology, Nanjing 210094, China.
§Department of Mechanical Engineering and Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Center for Engineering and Health, and Skin Disease Research Center, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 60208, United States.
⊥Center for Mechanics and Materials, Tsinghua University, Beijing 100084, China.
∇School of Aerospace Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China.
¶State Key Laboratory of Mechanics and Control of Mechanical Structures, Nanjing University of Aeronautics and Astronautics, Nanjing 210016, China.


Large-scale, dense arrays of plasmonic nanodisks on low-modulus, high-elongation elastomeric substrates represent a class of tunable optical systems, with reversible ability to shift key optical resonances over a range of nearly 600 nm at near-infrared wavelengths. At the most extreme levels of mechanical deformation (strains >100%), nonlinear buckling processes transform initially planar arrays into three-dimensional configurations, in which the nanodisks rotate out of the plane to form linear arrays with "wavy" geometries. Analytical, finite-element, and finite-difference time-domain models capture not only the physics of these buckling processes, including all of the observed modes, but also the quantitative effects of these deformations on the plasmonic responses. The results have relevance to mechanically tunable optical systems, particularly to soft optical sensors that integrate on or in the human body.


large-area nanodisk array; nanoscale buckling; stretchable plasmonics; wide-band tunability

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