Plasmonic-Enhanced Cholesteric Films: Coassembling Anisotropic Gold Nanorods with Cellulose Nanocrystals

Zheng Cheng, Yi Ma, Lin Yang, Feng Cheng, Zhongjie Huang, Avi Natan, Hongyan Li, Yong Chen, Daxian Cao, Jeffery HUANG, Yu Huang Wang, Yongmin Liu, Rendang Yang, Hongli Zhu*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articlepeer-review

54 Citations (Scopus)


Incorporating photonic crystals with nanoplasmonic building blocks gives rise to novel optoelectronic properties that promise designing advanced multifunctional materials and electronics. Herein, the free-standing chiral plasmonic composite films are designed by coassembling anisotropic plasmonic gold nanorods (GNRs) and rod-like cellulose nanocrystals (CNCs). The effects of surface charge and concentration of the GNRs on the structure and optical properties of the CNC/GNR films are examined within this study. The CNC/GNR hybrid films retain the photonic characteristic of the CNCs host while concomitantly possessing the plasmonic resonance of GNRs. The negatively charged GNRs distribute uniformly in the layered CNCs host, inducing strong electrostatic repulsion among the CNCs and thus promoting the formation of a larger helical pitch than the case without GNRs. The positively charged GNRs decrease the chiroptical activity in the composite films with increasing the concentration of GNR, which is confirmed by the circular dichroism spectra. Notably, the surface plasmon resonances of GNRs enhance the fluorescence emission, which has been demonstrated by surface-enhanced fluorescence signals in this work. This study sheds light on fabricating functional chiral plasmonic composite films with enhanced chiral plasmonics by utilizing CNCs as a dynamic chiral nematic template and adjusting surface charges.

Original languageEnglish
Article number1801816
JournalAdvanced Optical Materials
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - 3 May 2019

Scopus Subject Areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics

User-Defined Keywords

  • cellulose nanocrystals
  • chiral nematic structures
  • chiral plasmonic films
  • chiroptical activity
  • gold nanorod
  • surface-enhanced fluorescence


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