Amplification of the molecular chiroptical effect by low-loss dielectric nanoantennas
We report here the chiroptical amplification effect occurring in the hybrid systems consisting of chiral molecules and Si nanostructures. Under resonant excitation of circularly polarized light, the hybrid systems show strong CD induction signals at the optical frequency, which arise from both the electric and magnetic responses of the Si nanostructures. More interestingly, the induced CD signals from Si-based dielectric nanoantennas are always larger than that from Au-based plasmonic counterparts. The related physical origin was disclosed. Furthermore, compared to the Au-based high-loss plasmonic nanoantennas, Si-based low-loss structures would generate negligible photothermal effect, which makes Si nanoantennas an optimized candidate to amplify molecular CD signals with ultralow thermal damage. Our findings may provide a guideline for the design of novel chiral nanosensors, which are applicable in the fields of biomedicine and pharmaceutics.