Probing hot-electron effects in wide area plasmonic surfaces using X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy
Applied Physics Letters
American Institute of Physics Inc.
221608-1 - 221608-4
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Plasmon enhanced hot carrier formation in metallic nanostructures increasingly attracts attention due to potential applications in photodetection, photocatalysis, and solar energy conversion. Here, hot-electron effects in nanoscale metal-insulator-metal (MIM) structures are investigated using a non-contact X-ray photoelectron spectroscopy based technique using continuous wave X-ray and laser excitations. The effects are observed through shifts of the binding energy of the top metal layer upon excitation with lasers of 445, 532, and 650 nm wavelength. The shifts are polarization dependent for plasmonic MIM grating structures fabricated by electron beam lithography. Wide area plasmonic MIM surfaces fabricated using a lithography free route by the dewetting of evaporated Ag on HfO2 exhibit polarization independent optical absorption and surface photovoltage. Using a simple model and making several assumptions about the magnitude of the photoemission current, the responsivity and external quantum efficiency of wide area plasmonic MIM surfaces are estimated as 500 nA/W and 11 × 10-6 for 445 nm illumination. © 2014 AIP Publishing LLC.