Eunice Sok Ping Leong,Jie Deng,Siji Wu A*STAR Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (Singapore) Eng Huat Khoo A*STAR Institute of High Performance Computing (Singapore) Yan Jun Liu A*STAR Institute of Materials Research and Engineering (Singapore)
Chiral plasmonic nanostructures offer the ability to achieve strong optical circular dichroism (CD) activity over a broad spectral range, which has been challenging for chiral molecules. Chiral plasmonic nanostructures have been extensively studied based on top-down and bottom-up fabrication techniques. Particularly, in the top-down electron-beam lithography, 3D plasmonic nanostructure fabrication involves layer-by-layer patterning and complex alignment, which is time-consuming and causes many defects in the structures. Here, we present a free-standing 3D chiral plamonic nanostructures using the electron-beam lithography technique with much simplified fabrication processes. The 3D chiral plasmonic nanostructures consist of a free-standing ultrathin silicon nitride membrane with well-aligned L-shape metal nanostructures on one side and disk-shape ones on the other side. The free-standing membrane provides an ultra-smooth metal/dielectric interface and uniformly defines the gap between the upper and lower layers in an array of chiral nanostructures. Such free-standing chiral plasmonic nanostructures exhibit strong CD at optical frequencies, which can be engineered by simply changing the disk size on one side of the membrane. Experimental results are in good agreement with the finite-difference time-domain simulations. Such free-standing chiral plasmonics holds great potential for chirality analysis of biomolecules, drugs, and chemicals.