High-Contrast Switching of Plasmonic Structural Colors: Inorganic versus Organic Electrochromism
Artikel i vetenskaplig tidskrift, 2020

Plasmonic structural colors have recently received a lot of attention. For many applications there is a need to actively tune the colors after preparing the nanostructures, preferably with as strong changes in the optical response as possible. However, to date, there is a lack of systematic investigations on how to enhance contrast in electrically induced color modulation. In this work we implement electrochromic films with plasmonic metasurfaces and compare systematically organic and inorganic materials, with the primary aim to maximize brightness and contrast in a reflective color display. We show nanostructures with good chromaticity and high polarization-insensitive reflectivity (-90%) that are electrochemically stable in a nonaqueous solvent. Methods are evaluated for reliable and uniform electropolymerization of the conductive polymer dimethylpropylenedioxythiophene (PProDOTMe2) on gold. The resulting organic films are well-described by Lambert-Beer formalism, and the highest achievable contrast is easily determined in transmission mode. The optical properties of the inorganic option (WO3) require full Fresnel models due to thin film interference, and the film thickness must be carefully selected in order to maintain the chromaticity of the metasurfaces. Still, the optimized fully inorganic device reaches the highest contrast of approximately 60% reflectivity change for all primary colors. The switching time is about an order of magnitude faster for the organic films (hundreds of ms). The bistability is very long (hours) for the inorganic devices and comparable for the polymers, which makes the power consumption essentially zero for maintaining the same state. Finally, we show that switching of the primary colors in optimized devices (both organic and inorganic) provides almost twice as high brightness and contrast compared to existing reflective display technologies with RGB subpixels created by color filters.

electronic paper

structural colors



reflective display


Marika Gugole

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Tillämpad kemi

Oliver Olsson

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Tillämpad kemi

Kunli Xiong

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Tillämpad kemi

Jolie Blake

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Tillämpad kemi

José Montero Amenedo

Uppsala universitet

Ilknur Bayrak Pehlivan

Uppsala universitet

G. A. Niklasson

Uppsala universitet

Andreas Dahlin

Chalmers, Kemi och kemiteknik, Tillämpad kemi

ACS Photonics

2330-4022 (eISSN)

Vol. 7 7 1762-1772


Textil-, gummi- och polymermaterial

Annan materialteknik

Annan elektroteknik och elektronik



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