Refractive index database

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Optical constants of Au (Gold)
Yakubovsky et al. 2019: 4-nm film; n,k 0.30–3.3 µm

Wavelength: µm

Complex refractive index (n+ik)[ i ]

n   k   LogX   LogY   eV

Derived optical constants

Conditions & Spec sheet

n_is_absolute: true
wavelength_is_vacuum: true
film_thickness: 4.1e-9
substrate: MoS2/SiO2


Au thickness = 4.1 nm, e-beam evaporated at 5 Å/s with a base pressure of 5e-7 Torr on MoS2 CVD monolayer on SiO2 substrate at T = 20 °C. Thickness was determined by AFM.


D. I. Yakubovsky, Y. V. Stebunov, R. V. Kirtaev, G. A. Ermolaev, M. S. Mironov, S. M. Novikov, A. V. Arsenin, V. S. Volkov. Ultrathin and ultrasmooth gold films on monolayer MoS2, Adv. Mater. Interfaces 6, 1900196 (2019) (Numerical data kindly provided by Georgy Ermolaev)


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Gold, Au

Gold (Au) is a noble metal renowned for its unique combination of chemical stability, high reflectivity, and excellent electrical conductivity. In optics, gold is often used as a thin-film coating for mirrors and other optical components, particularly in applications requiring high reflectivity in the infrared range. Its stability against oxidation and corrosion ensures long-lasting performance, making it a preferred material for harsh or sensitive environments. Gold nanoparticles have also garnered attention in the field of plasmonics, where they are used to manipulate light on the nanoscale and have found applications in sensing, imaging, and photothermal therapy. Unlike many other metals, gold's optical properties are relatively consistent over a broad range of conditions, but it's important to note that its refractive index and other optical characteristics can vary based on its form—be it bulk, thin film, or nanoparticle. Given its unique attributes and versatility, gold remains an invaluable material in both classical and cutting-edge optical technologies.

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