A plasmonic random laser tunable through stretching silver nanowires embedded in a flexible substrate
A mechanically-tunable random laser based on a waveguide-plasmonic scheme has been investigated. This laser can be constructed by spin coating a solution of polydimethylsiloxane doped with the rhodamine 6G organic dye and silver nanowires onto a silicone rubber slab. The excellent overlap of the plasmon resonance peak of the silver nanowires with both the pump wavelength and the photoluminescence spectrum provides the low threshold and tuning properties of the random laser. The random laser wavelength can be tuned from 558 to 565 nm by stretching the soft substrate, which causes reorientation and breakage of the silver nanowires. The polarization state of the random laser can also be changed from random polarization to partial polarization by stretching. The laser performance remains unchanged after the stretching and restoration experiments. These results not only enable easy realization of an ultrathin flexible plasmonic random laser but also provide insights into the mechanisms of three-dimensional plasmonic feedback random lasers.