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These articles were highlighted on the covers of the first issue for 2015 — the Advanced Optical Materials January issue:
Gold films, made suitably thin, exhibit high transparency and high conductivity at the same time. A. Kossoy, K. Leosson, and co-workers from the University of Iceland and Imperial College London have fabricated continuous gold films as thin as approximately 5 nm on glass substrates, using conventional deposition techniques. Experiments show that transmission of light through such films is consistently lower than the theoretically expected value, an effect attributed to atomic-scale interface roughness.
When giant nanocrystal quantum dots (g-NQDs) are coupled to graphene, pairs of excitons optically excited in the g-NQDs experience efficient recombination and subsequent simultaneous emission of photon pairs. This enhancement is provided by a localized plasmon supported by a charge puddle that forms underneath the photocharged g-NQD. H. Htoon and co-workers reveal the tremendous potential of graphene-g-NQD hybrids for lasing and entangled photon source applications.
T. Tanaka and co-workers characterize a large-scale 3D metamaterial structure, consisting of fourfold-symmetric 3D split-ring resonators (SRRs). Formed by a metal stress-driven self-folding method, these metamaterials demonstrate an isotropic property for any lateral rotation, due to the interplay of the electric and magnetic interactions of the 3D SRR.