Below-gap excitation of semiconducting single-wall carbon nanotubes
We investigate the optoelectronic properties of the semiconducting (6,5) species of single-walled carbon nanotubes by measuring ultrafast transient transmission changes with 20 fs time resolution. We demonstrate that photons with energy below the lowest exciton resonance efficiently lead to linear excitation of electronic states. This finding challenges the established picture of a vanishing optical absorption below the fundamental excitonic resonance. Our result points towards below-gap electronic states as an intrinsic property of semiconducting nanotubes.