Nanoscale optoelectronics

The interaction of light with structures much smaller than its wavelength, i.e. far below the diffraction limit, is enhanced by the excitation of plasmons, which mediate the energy exchange between photons and electrons. As the size of metal nanostructures and optoelectronic nanodevices approaches atomic-scale dimensions, quantization effects in their electronic and plasmon structure gain increasing relevance in light scattering. Our research aims at creating a bridge connecting atomic-scale spectroscopy with optics to resolve at the atomic scale both the electronic structure and light scattering/emission by the atomic-sized antennas in response to optical/electron excitations.