Gigahertz All-Optical Modulation Using Reconfigurable Nanophotonic Metamolecules

Biqin Dong, Xiangfan Chen, Fan Zhou, Chen Wang, Hao F. Zhang, Cheng Sun

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


We report the design of reconfigurable metamolecules consisting a large array of nanowire featuring U-shaped cross section. These nanoscale metamolecules support colocalized electromagnetic resonance at optical frequencies and mechanical resonance at GHz frequencies with a deep-subdiffraction-limit spatial confinement (â14Î2/100). The coherent coupling of those two distinct resonances manifests a strong optical force, which is fundamentally different from the commonly studied forms of radiation forces, gradient forces, or photothermal induced deformation. The strong optical force acting upon the built-in compliance further sets the stage for allowing the metamolecules to dynamically change their optical properties upon the incident light. The all-optical modulation at the frequency at 1.8 GHz has thus been demonstrated experimentally using a monolayer of metamolecules. The metamolecules were conveniently fabricated using complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor-compatible metal deposition and nanoimprinting processes and thus offer promising potential in developing integrated all-optical modulator.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)7690-7695
Number of pages6
JournalNano Letters
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 14 2016
Externally publishedYes


  • Metamolecules
  • all-optical modulation
  • gigahertz mechanical resonance
  • magnetic resonance
  • reconfigurable materials

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Bioengineering
  • General Chemistry
  • General Materials Science
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Mechanical Engineering


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