In this study, we overview resonance energy transfer between molecules in the presence of plasmonic structures and derive an explicit Förster-type expression for the rate of plasmon-coupled resonance energy transfer (PC-RET). The proposed theory is general for energy transfer in the presence of materials with any space-dependent, frequency-dependent, or complex dielectric functions. Furthermore, the theory allows us to develop the concept of a generalized spectral overlap (GSO) J (the integral of the molecular absorption coefficient, normalized emission spectrum, and the plasmon coupling factor) for understanding the wavelength dependence of PC-RET and to estimate the rate of PC-RET WET. Indeed, WET = (8.785 × 10-25 mol) øDτD-1J, where øD is donor fluorescence quantum yield and τD is the emission lifetime. Simulations of the GSO for PC-RET show that the most important spectral region for PC-RET is not necessarily near the maximum overlap of donor emission and acceptor absorption. Instead a significant plasmonic contribution can involve a different spectral region from the extinction maximum of the plasmonic structure. This study opens a promising direction for exploring exciton transport in plasmonic nanostructures, with possible applications in spectroscopy, photonics, biosensing, and energy devices.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Materials Science(all)