Physics Colloquium, "Nanoscale Lasing: A Conundrum?"

Presented by: Teri Odom, Northwestern University - Location: DUAN G1B20

Abstract:  Metal nanostructures concentrate optical fields into highly confined, nanoscale volumes that can be exploited in a wide range of applications. However, the use of plasmonic structures as cavities for generating coherent emission seems counter-intuitive based on conventional designs of macroscopic lasers. This talk will describe how arrays of nanoparticles can support a unique open-cavity architecture that can be used to interrogate the mechanisms of energy transfer processes and plasmon amplification in confined systems. First, we will describe how single band-edge lattice plasmons in metal nanoparticle arrays can contribute to single-mode lasing at room-temperature with directional emission. Second, we will discuss how ultra-narrow resonances from superlattice plasmons, collective excitations in hierarchical nanoparticle arrays, can support multi-modal nanolasing. Finally, we will describe challenges in and approaches to differentiating among competing energy transfer in the lasing action based on coherence, cavity size, and ultra-fast characteristics.

Teri W. Odom is Charles E. and Emma H. Morrison Professor of Chemistry and Chair of the Chemistry Department at Northwestern University. She is an expert in designing structured nanoscale materials that exhibit extraordinary size and shape-dependent optical properties. Odom has pioneered a suite of multi-scale nanofabrication tools that has resulted in flat optics that can manipulate light at the nanoscale and beat the diffraction limit, plasmon-based nanoscale lasers that exhibit tunable color, and hierarchical substrates that show controlled wetting and super-hydrophobicity. She has also invented a class of biological nanoconstructs that are facilitating unique insight into nanoparticle-cell interactions and that show superior imaging and therapeutic properties because of their gold nanostar shape. 

Odom is a Fellow of the American Physical Society (APS), the American Chemical Society (ACS), the Materials Research Society (MRS), the Optical Society of America (OSA), the Royal Society of Chemistry (RSC), and is an OSA Senior Member. She has received numerous other honors and awards, including a Research Corporation TREE Award; a U.S. Department of Defense Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship; the Associated Student Government Faculty Honor Roll; the Carol Tyler Award from the International Precious Metals Institute; a Blavatnik Young Scientist Finalist in Chemistry and Physical Sciences and Engineering; a Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study Fellowship at Harvard University; the ACS Akron Section Award; an National Institutes of Health (NIH) Director's Pioneer Award; the MRS Outstanding Young Investigator Award; the National Fresenius Award from Phi Lambda Upsilon and the ACS; the Rohm and Haas New Faculty Award; an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship; a DuPont Young Investigator Grant; a NSF CAREER Award; the ExxonMobil Solid State Chemistry Faculty Fellowship; and a David and Lucile Packard Fellowship in Science and Engineering. Odom was founding Chair of the Noble Metal Nanoparticles Gordon Research Conference (2010) and founding Vice-Chair of Lasers in Micro, Nano, Bio Systems (2018). She is on the Editorial Advisory Boards of ACS Nano, Materials Horizons, Annual Reviews of Physical Chemistry, ChemNanoMat, Chemical Society Reviews, Bioconjugate Chemistry, and Nano Letters. She was founding Associate Editor for Chemical Science (2009-2013) and serves as founding Executive Editor of ACS Photonics (2013 - ). Odom’s Personal Story of Discovery was featured by ACS Publications.

Colloquium Host: Scott Diddams

Coffee, tea, and cookies will be available starting at 3:45 p.m., in DUAN G1B31.

Wednesday, November 28, 2018 at 4:00pm to 5:00pm

Duane Physics and Astrophysics, G1B20
2000 Colorado Avenue, Boulder, CO 80309

Event Type



Science & Technology


Students, Faculty, Graduate Students, Postdoc

College, School & Unit

Engineering & Applied Science, Arts & Sciences


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