School of Physics and Astronomy, University of Southampton, UK










Research projects :       
5. Light transport in random media
4. Nanowire materials
3. Plasmonic nanoantennas
2. Single nanoparticles
1. Ultrashort strain solitons


Note: more recent updates on our activities can be found on my group website.

04/2013 Transport of light through semiconductor nanowire mats is characterised by strong correlations and mesoscopic fluctuations, see our work in Nature Photonics.

03/2013 Our work on the epsilon-near-zero response of ITO layers has been published in Applied Physics Letters.

11/2012 Our collaborative project with Andre Utgenannt, Joe Keddie and Antonios Kanaras on nanoparticle assembly in evaporative lithography has resulted in a publication in Chemical Communications.

11/2012 Our work on hyperspectral single-particle microscopy has appeared in a special issue of Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.

10/2012 Welcome to Leo-Jay Black, Roman Bruck, Simon Gregory and Dan Traviss who have joined our group.

08/2012 Our recent work on reciprocity breaking in random media has been covered by Nature Photonics News & Views .

06/2012 Welcome to Holly Farnham, Tom Haskins, Ben Chichester and Alexander Wilcox, who have received summer bursaries to perform cutting-edge research in our group.

06/2012 Our work on asymmetric dimer nanoantennas has appeared in ACS Nano.

05/2012 Martina Abb has received a postgraduate student award at the Symposium on Control of Light at the Nanoscale at the EMRS Spring Meeting in Strassbourg.

04/2012 Our work on ultrafast reciprocity breaking in random media has appeared in Physical Review Letters.

04/2012 Otto Muskens has been awarded a prestigious 5-year research fellowship from EPSRC on the topic 'Complex nanophotonic and plasmonic networks for ultrafast optical devices'.

03/2012 The work of Marvin Schulz and Sabine Abb on self-assembly and plasmonic response of gold nanorods and branched nanoparticles has appeared in Langmuir.

01/2012 We are continuing our research on plasmonic nanoantennas with the support of a 3-year £600k grant from EPSRC.

11/2011 Some press coverage for our work on nanoparticle treatment.

11/2011 The paper 'Interactions of Human Endothelial Cells with Gold Nanoparticles of Different Morphologies' by D. Barctzak and co-workers has appeared in Small.

08/2011: Southampton undergraduates Andrew Meadowcroft and Iain McKeeman have started their summer studentships on modeling the flow of light in nanomaterials.

07/2011: University of Hamburg undergraduate Marvin Schulz is doing a 10-week BSc project in our group on complex plasmonic nanomaterials.

07/2011: Our work on laser treatment of cells has received attention from the press: Gold Nanoparticles Bring Scientists Closer to a Treatment for Cancer.

05/2011: Press coverage on our recent work on nanoantenna-ITO hybrids.

04/2011: Our article on all-optical control of a single plasmonic nanoantenna-ITO hybrid has been accepted for publication in Nano Letters.

03/2011: The article 'Ultrafast dephasing of light in strongly scattering semiconductor nanowires' by M. Abb, E.P.A.M. Bakkers, and O. L. Muskens has been published in Physical Review Letters.

02/2011: The article 'Laser-Induced Damage and Recovery of Plasmonically Targeted Human Umbilical Endothelial Cells' by D. Bartczak, O. L. Muskens, T. M. Millar, T. Sanchez-Elsner, and A. G. Kanaras has appeared in Nano Letters.

01/2011: The Royal Society has awarded a 2-year International Joint Project grant for a collaboration with the group of Erik Bakkers in Eindhoven. We will fabricate and characterize new nanowire layers for use in light trapping and photovoltaics.

10/2010: Nanowire light scattering is featured in SPIE Newsroom .

09/2010: Fedor Tikhonenko and Tom Strudley have started in the Integrated Nanophotonics group.

06/2010: Sabine Abb, Claire Blejean, and Hannah Warren have started their summer studentships in the Integrated Nanophotonics group. Hannah is working on a bioimaging project funded by the EPSRC / Institute for Life Sciences. Claire measures light transport by nanowires, on a project funded by the School of Physics and Astonomy. Sabine goal is the synthesis and self assambly of nanoparticles for spectroscopic applications.

05/2010: Our work on plasmonic nanoantenna switches has been covered in a popular news item by NanotechWeb.

04/2010: The article 'Photoconductively loaded plasmonic nanoantenna as building block for ultracompact optical switches' by N. Large, M. Abb, J. Aizpurua, O. L. Muskens has been published in Nano Letters.

03/2010: The article 'Experimental studies on the mode structure of random lasers' by R. G. S. El-Dardiry, A. P. Mosk, O. L. Muskens, A. Lagendijk has been published in Physical Review A.

01/2010: The proposal 'Interfacing electronics and photonics on a single chip using plasmonic nanoantennas' has been funded in the University of Southampton's Adventure in Research grant scheme. This grant will provide a postdoc salary and clean room access.

12/2009: Otto Muskens' First Grant proposal 'A nonlinear plasmonic antenna switch as building block for ultracompact photonic devices' has been funded by the EPSRC. This grant will provide the group with a budget of £125,000 for setting up an experimental nanophotonics laboratory.

11/2009: Natascha Fairbairn has started her PhD research on the topic of single nanoparticle biosensing for use in live cell studies. The Integrated nanophotonics group now consists of 7 members.

10/2009: Southampton undergraduate students Nathan Langford, Paul Venn, Marcel Fowler and Scott Kneller have started their MPhys research projects in the group. Nathan and Paul are studying light transport in random media, Marcel and Scott are developing a new biosensing technique.

08/2009: A £15,000 Royal Society Research Grant has been awarded to Otto Muskens for a research project on single nanocrystal spectroscopy with the aim of improving light harvesting in next generation solar cells.

06/2009: A theoretical investigation of fluorescence enhancement by single metal nanoantennas, by Vincenzo Giannini, Jose Sanchez-Gil, Otto Muskens, and Jaime Gomez Rivas, has been published in the Journal of the Optical Society B.

06/2009: Martina Abb has started her PhD project in the Integrated Nanophotonics Group. Martina will work on integration of plasmonic components in silicon photonics.

04/2009: Southampton undergraduate students Hannah Warren and Alex Perevedentsev have obtained Summer Studentship grants from EPSRC and USRG. Hannah and Alex will participate for 10 weeks in experiments taking place in the Integrated Nanophotonics Group.
04/2009: Nature Photonics has covered our article on nanowire scattering in their Research Highlights, see pdf.
02/2009: In a publication appearing in Nano Letters, we show that nanowires are one of the strongest scattering materials available.
02/2009: Silke Diedenhofen's research on omnidirectional, antireflective nanowire layers was published in Advanced Materials, a popular review 'Moth eyes inspire more efficient solar cells' has appeared in Physics World.
01/2009: Starting from January 1st 2009, I am working as a Lecturer in the Quantum Light and Matter Group at the University of Southampton.
11/2008: Nano Today has highlighted our Nano Letters publication Design of light scattering in nanowire materials for photovoltaic applications in their December issue, see pdf.
11/2008: The article 'Optical extinction spectrum of a single metal nanoparticle: Quantitative characterization of a particle and of its local environment' by O. L. Muskens, P. Billaud, M. Broyer, N. Del Fatti, and F. Vallee has appeared in Phys. Rev. B.

07/2008: The article Design of light scattering in nanowire materials for photovoltaic applications by O.L. Muskens, J. Gómez Rivas, R.E. Algra, E.P.A.M. Bakkers, and A. Lagendijk, has been accepted for publication in Nano Letters.

05/2008: The article 'Strong enhancement of the radiative decay rate of emitters by single plasmonic nanoantennas' has reached the Hot Papers list of Nano Letters.

04/2008: Nanowires decorate the cover of Advanced Functional Materials


03/2008: Master student Ramy El Dardiry has obtained his degree cum laude on his thesis 'Spatial structure of random laser modes' at the University of Twente.

01/2008: The first article with Ad Lagendijk, 'Broadband enhanced backscattering spectroscopy of strongly scattering random media' has appeared in Optics Express. In this paper we present a new technique for characterizing strongly scattering random media over a large spectral range in the visible and near-infrared.