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Seminars and Events

Boise State University Department of Physics


Dr. Stephanie Law

Friday, Nov 9, 2018, 1:30 – 2:30 p.m. in MPCB 108

Collective optical excitations in complex materials

Abstract: Plasmon polaritons are collective oscillations of electrons coupled to an incident electromagnetic field.  Plasmons can be used to confine light to subwavelength volumes or to strongly enhance light-matter coupling.  My research focuses on the growth and characterization of alternative plasmonic materials for the infrared and terahertz ranges.  In this talk, I will first discuss our work on growing high-quality topological insulator thin films by molecular beam epitaxy. Topological insulators exhibit coupled two-dimensional surface Dirac plasmons with resonances in the THz. I will show results of our efforts to tune these plasmon resonances and demonstrate exceptionally high mode indices and long plasmon lifetimes due to the topological nature of the electrons. Finally, I will show results from our work using heavily-doped InAs grown by molecular beam epitaxy for mid-infrared plasmonic and metamaterial devices. This material acts as a near-perfect Drude metal with tunable optical properties that can also be integrated with existing semiconductor optoelectronic devices. I will present work on the growth of layered semiconductor metamaterials and demonstrate both bulk negative refraction as well as the excitation of high-wavevector volume plasmon polaritons with large effective indices and tunable electric field profile.

Bio: Prof. Law is the Clare Boothe Luce Assistant Professor in Materials Science and Engineering at the University of Delaware.  She received her B.S. in Physics from Iowa State University and her Ph.D. in Physics from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign, where she studied interactions between superconductors and semiconductors.  She then held a postdoctoral position in the Electrical Engineering department at Illinois where she demonstrated the feasibility of using doped semiconductors as tunable, low-loss infrared plasmonic materials.  Her research investigates the use of novel materials and architectures grown using molecular beam epitaxy for plasmonic and metamaterial devices in the infrared and THz.  Prof. Law won the North American Molecular Beam Epitaxy Young Investigator award in 2016 and the Department of Energy Early Career award in 2017.








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