Abstract

Surface plasmons in metallic nanostructures including metallically nanomodified solar cells are conventionally studied and modeled by application of the Mie approach to plasmons or by the finite element solution of differential Maxwell equations with imposed boundary and material constraints (e.g., upon commercial COMSOL software system). Both approaches are essentially classical ones and neglect quantum particularities related to plasmon excitations in metallic components. We demonstrate that these quantum plasmon effects are of crucial importance especially in theoretical simulations of plasmon-aided photovoltaic phenomena. Quantum corrections considerably improve both the Mie and COMSOL approaches in this case. We present the semiclassical random phase approximation description of plasmons in metallic nanoparticles and apply the quantum Fermi golden rule scheme to assess the sunlight energy transfer to the semiconductor solar cell mediated by surface plasmons in metallic nanoparticles deposited on the top of the battery. In addition, short-ranged electron–electron interaction in metals is discussed in the framework of the semiclassical hydrodynamic model. The significance of the related quantum corrections is illustrated by the quantumly improved COMSOL simulations.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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