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23 August 2010 Preparation of nanostructured ultrathin silver layer
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Silver is widely used for a fabrication of plasmonic devices due to its unique optical constants. Nanostructured Ag layer can exhibit strong localized surface plasmon resonance, which mainly affects its optical behavior in visible and near infrared spectra. The nanostructure of the Ag layer is mainly influenced during the initial stage of the silver nucleation. Therefore we focused our attention on the study of this stage of the silver growth. The nanostructured ultra-thin silver layers were prepared by means of the magnetron sputtering. The nucleation mode and the resulting nanostructure was controlled by the deposition conditions. The initial stage of the nucleation and the layer growth was studied by means of an optical monitoring, which is based on a principle of spectrophotometric measurement of sample reflectivity. The measured data were fitted to a model of layered structure. The non-continual (Volmer-Weber) mode of the layer nucleation was clearly distinguished in the monitored data. Thus we were able to estimate the point of the non-continual layer coalescence as well as the subsequent evolution of the surface roughness. The prepared nanostructured Ag layers were analyzed by Atomic Force Microscopy (AFM) and Scanning Electron Microscopy (SEM). Optical properties were studied by spectroscopic ellipsometry and spectrophotometry.
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Jiří Bulír, Michal Novotný, Anna Lynnykova, Ján Lančok, Michal Bodnár, and Marek Škereň "Preparation of nanostructured ultrathin silver layer", Proc. SPIE 7766, Nanostructured Thin Films III, 77660Q (23 August 2010);

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