High-quality nanocavities through multimodal confinement of hyperbolic polaritons in hexagonal boron nitride

Hanan Herzig Sheinfux, Lorenzo Orsini, Minwoo Jung, Iacopo Torre, Matteo Ceccanti, Simone Marconi, Rinu Maniyara, David Barcons Ruiz, Alexander Hötger, Ricardo Bertini, Sebastián Castilla, Niels C.H. Hesp, Eli Janzen, Alexander Holleitner, Valerio Pruneri, James H. Edgar, Gennady Shvets, Frank H.L. Koppens

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Compressing light into nanocavities substantially enhances light–matter interactions, which has been a major driver for nanostructured materials research. However, extreme confinement generally comes at the cost of absorption and low resonator quality factors. Here we suggest an alternative optical multimodal confinement mechanism, unlocking the potential of hyperbolic phonon polaritons in isotopically pure hexagonal boron nitride. We produce deep-subwavelength cavities and demonstrate several orders of magnitude improvement in confinement, with estimated Purcell factors exceeding 108 and quality factors in the 50–480 range, values approaching the intrinsic quality factor of hexagonal boron nitride polaritons. Intriguingly, the quality factors we obtain exceed the maximum predicted by impedance-mismatch considerations, indicating that confinement is boosted by higher-order modes. We expect that our multimodal approach to nanoscale polariton manipulation will have far-reaching implications for ultrastrong light–matter interactions, mid-infrared nonlinear optics and nanoscale sensors.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)499-505
Number of pages7
JournalNature Materials
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2024


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