Femtosecond pulses in nanophotonics
A.A. Ivanov a
M.V. Alfimov a
A.M. Zheltikov b
a Photochemistry Center, Russian Academy of Sciences, Novatorov str. 7a, Moscow, 117421, Russian Federation
b International Laser Center of M.V. Lomonosov Moscow State University, Vorobevy gory, Moscow, 119992, Russian Federation
We give an overview of the physical fundamentals of femtosecond nanophotonics — the basic physical phenomena behind the interaction of ultrashort laser pulses with nanoscale objects, nanocomposite materials, supramolecular structures, and molecular aggregates. Femtosecond laser pulses pave a way to achieving high intensities of electromagnetic radiation without irreversible damage to materials, making it possible to observe unique regimes of interaction of the light field with nanostructures and molecular aggregates. Dielectric and electron confinement, as well as resonances due to quantum size effects and collective phenomena in supramolecular and aggregate structures, radically enhance nonlinear-optical interactions of ultrashort pulses. These phenomena offer interesting solutions for a high-sensitivity nonlinear-optical metrology of nanostructured materials, including the analysis of their composition, structure, and morphology, suggesting new attractive strategies for the control, switching, and transformation of ultrashort pulses.