Abstract

We report on the soliton-mediated orientational ordering of gold nanorods in a colloidal plasmonic suspension. Due to the nonlinear optical response of the suspension, a light beam forms an optical spatial soliton which creates an effective optical waveguide. The orientation of the nanorods along the waveguide is regulated by the optical torque exerted by the linearly polarized soliton beam. By measuring the polarization transmission spectrum of a probe beam at a wavelength far from the plasmonic resonance, we observe orientation-enhanced birefringence along the soliton channel, suggesting a disorder-to-order transition of nanorods due to the action of the soliton beam. This approach may be applied in other colloidal systems with optical force-induced nonlinearity.

© 2017 Optical Society of America

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