Date of Award




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Department of Physics

Content Description

1 online resource (xv, 116 pages) : color illustrations.

Dissertation/Thesis Chair

Mengbing Huang

Committee Members

William Lanford, John Kimball, Hassaram Bakhru


dielectric function, FDTD, ion beam implantation, nanostructures, plasmonics, texturing, Silicon, Optoelectronic devices, Photonics, Ion bombardment, Nanostructured materials

Subject Categories

Materials Science and Engineering | Nanoscience and Nanotechnology | Physics


In today’s fast life, energy consumption has increased more than ever and with that the demand for a renewable and cleaner energy source as a substitute for the fossil fuels has also increased. Solar radiations are the ultimate source of energy but harvesting this energy in a cost effective way is a challenging task. Si is the dominating material for microelectronics and photovoltaics. But owing to its indirect band gap, Si is an inefficient light absorber, thus requiring a thickness of solar cells beyond tens of microns which increases the cost of solar energy. Therefore, techniques to increase light absorption in thin film Si solar cells are of great importance and have been the focus of research for a few decades now. Another big issue of technology in this fast-paced world is the computing rate or data transfer rate between components of a chip in ultra-fast processors. Existing electronic interconnects suffering from the signal delays and heat generation issues are unable to handle high data rates. A possible solution to this problem is in replacing the electronic interconnects with optical interconnects which have large data carrying capacity. However, optical components are limited in size by the fundamental laws of diffraction to about half a wavelength of light and cannot be combined with nanoscale electronic components. Tremendous research efforts have been directed in search of an advanced technology which can bridge the size gap between electronic and photonic worlds. An emerging technology of “plasmonics’’ which exploits the extraordinary optical properties of metal nanostructures to tailor the light at nanoscale has been considered a potential solution to both of the above-mentioned problems.