Optical illumination of ultrathin metal films and nanostructures can give rise to high absorption and excited charge carriers with energy in excess of their thermal distribution, so-called “hot carriers.” These carriers can be used for ultrafast detectors, near-IR and visible photo-sensors, and to enhance chemical reaction rates. Here we discuss our latest work using novel materials to achieve ultrahigh absorption and hot carrier generation in films that are 100 times thinner than the illumination wavelength.

© 2018 The Author(s)

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