Many of you were awaiting it (I can see it from the visits and research keywords pointing to this blog), here it comes for your greatest nanoplasmonic pleasure : the Summer School on Plasmonics 2nd edition 2011 in the beautiful Porquerolles island. Book the dates : October 3 to October 7, 2011.
See the official website. Registration deadline: please apply by May 30th.
This time, I will give a tutorial talk, so I'm not part of the organization committee (which means I am not the person to contact for help in the registration, abstract submission, venue, etc...)
Also, for lecturers of the first edition, I know many of you really enjoyed the summer school and wanted to come back for the second edition. However, the organization committee decided to change all the lecturers for each edition, and not to take the same person twice. This is a tough but fair rule (Gordon Research Conferences apply the same).
The Fresnel Institute is hiring a top qualified researcher to fill an assistant professor (Maitre de Conference in French) position. The research topic will primarily deal with theoretical simulations of nanophotonics. Read the full details here, and the official announcement here. Deadline for applications March 25th.
Molecular Nano-Headlight: turning a single molecule into a bright source of light
Looking for single molecules under the microscope. Many physical and chemical methods aim at analyzing single molecule behaviors. However, single molecule detection is a challenging task, due to the very weak amount of light that is radiated by a single molecule.
Nano-Antennas to control the emission of light. To increase and control the light emitted by a single molecule, scientists from the Fresnel Institute and the Institute of Supramolecular Science and Engineering ISIS use metal antennas of nanometer dimensions. These antennas are designed to work for light as conventional antennas work for radio waves. Both the emission intensity and direction can be controled down at the single molecule level, which realizes a major breakthrough.
The researchers use a special kind of nanoantenna made of an aperture surrounded by circular corrugations milled in a gold film. This antenna transforms a standard molecule into a bright unidirectional fluorescence source: the fluorescence intensity is enhanced up to 120 fold, and almost all the light is emitted into a narrow cone in the vertical direction.
The bright emission and narrow directionality enable the detection of single molecules with a simple microscope, and improve the effectiveness of fluorescence-based applications. This demonstration is of high relevance for the development of biochemical sensing methods, light emitting devices, and quantum information processing.
Here is a quick list of conferences where my group's work will be presented. It also provides a short selection of European conferences on nano-bio-photonics, check the weblinks:
- March 14th: invited seminar at FOM-AMOLF, Amsterdam
- March 17th: "Antennas and near-field electromagnetics" workshop of the GdR Ondes, Paris
- May 16th-20th: invited course at the "Nano-objects and interfaces" NOIS 2011 topical CNRS school, Anglet
- May 19th-21st: "Molecular Plasmonics" conference, Jena
- May 23rd-26th: CLEO-EQEC Europe conference, Munich
- July 04th-07th: invited talk at "Coloq'12 Lasers and quantum optics colloqium", Marseille
- September 07th-09th: "Single molecule spectroscopy workshop", Berlin
- October 03rd-07th: invited talk at "Summer School on Plasmonics II SSOP2", Porquerolles
Our study on fluorescence enhancement and beaming in nanoapertures with circular corrugations has just been released on the Nano Letters website. See the abstract here. A free reprint (for personal use only) can be downloaded here.
Rationale: A wide range of applications in physical and chemical sciences is presently limited by the weak optical signal emitted by a single fluorescent molecule. To overcome this challenge, plasmonic antennas are receiving a growing interest to control both the fluorescence rate and angular emission distribution from single quantum emitters. However, there is currently no experimental demonstration reporting a clear improvement in both the emission intensity and directionality using the same nanoantenna. We solve this issue here.
Results: we report the demonstration of bright unidirectional photon sources from single molecules. The emission rate per molecule is enhanced up to 120 fold, and simultaneously the fluorescence emission is directed into a narrow angular cone of 15°. This work has four major aspects of general interest:
1) Each of our results on enhancing the fluorescence signal and narrowing the angular distribution is going well beyond the current state-of-the-art, and moreover, we achieve both features simultaneously on the same structure, which is unique to our knowledge.
2) Nanoapertures surrounded by periodic corrugations have generated a considerable interest in the photonics community. This is the first study where corrugated apertures are used to enhance the detection of single molecules.
3) We thoroughly quantify the increased light-matter coupling and the radiation pattern at the single emitter level.
4) The bright emission and narrow directionality release the need for high-end microscope objectives. Efficient detection of single molecules is achieved with a simple low numerical aperture objective.