KTH/Nordita/SU seminar in Theoretical Physics

Light, Metal and Holes

by Thomas Ebbesen (Strasbourg University and CNRS)

FD5 (Svedbergsalen)

FD5 (Svedbergsalen)

A hole in a screen is probably the simplest optical element possible, and has been the object of curiosity and technological applications long before it was first analyzed scientifically in the 17th century. Since then the optics of holes had been extensively studied and was thought to be well understood. In the past decade it has been found that when the holes are milled in metal films new and sometimes surprising properties can emerge due to the optical properties of the metal which have generated considerable interest both on a fundamental level and in regards to the numerous applications that have emerged in fields ranging from chemistry to opto-electronics.