Quantum Electrodynamic Behavior of Chlorophyll in a Plasmonic Nanocavity

Egor Kokin, Hyun Ji An, Donghoon Koo, Seungyeon Han, Keumrai Whang, Taewook Kang, Inhee Choi, Luke P. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


Plasmonic nanocavities have been used as a novel platform for studying strong light-matter coupling, opening access to quantum chemistry, material science, and enhanced sensing. However, the biomolecular study of cavity quantum electrodynamics (QED) is lacking. Here, we report the quantum electrodynamic behavior of chlorophyll-a in a plasmonic nanocavity. We construct an extreme plasmonic nanocavity using Au nanocages with various linker molecules and Au mirrors to obtain a strong coupling regime. Plasmon resonance energy transfer (PRET)-based hyperspectral imaging is applied to study the electrodynamic behaviors of chlorophyll-a in the nanocavity. Furthermore, we observe the energy level splitting of chlorophyll-a, similar to the cavity QED effects due to the light-matter interactions in the cavity. Our study will provide insight for further studies in quantum biological electron or energy transfer, electrodynamics, the electron transport chain of mitochondria, and energy harvesting, sensing, and conversion in both biological and biophysical systems.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)9861-9868
Number of pages8
JournalNano Letters
Issue number24
StatePublished - 28 Dec 2022

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Chemical Society.


  • chlorophyll
  • energy splitting
  • nanocavity
  • plasmonics
  • quantum electrodynamics
  • strong coupling


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