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Storing A Rainbow Using Plasmonics

“Scientists have been able to use metal to do tricks with light. Now they can differentiate that light into a spectrum, and store each color in separate little grooves on the metal.

With the power of plasmonics, you may one day have a rainbow on your keychain.

Plasmonics is a branch of physics that, with the push towards quantum and optical computing, is gaining more and more interest.

Practically speaking, plasmonics is another example of how things behave very, very strangely at small scales. For instance, if a hole too small for visible light to get through is blocked by a piece of gold foil, suddenly light shines out the far end of the gold foil. The larger the foil is, the more light shines through.

Plasmonics help shrink down the already-tiny world of light. Plasmons, little ripples of energy in the surface of a metal, interact electromagnetic waves and keep, or move them through, a hollow space otherwise too small for them to fit into.

Researchers used this property of plasmonics to temporarily trap a rainbow.”

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