Optical absorption and energy-loss spectra of aligned carbon nanotubes
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Optical-absorption cross-sections and energy-loss spectra of aligned multishell carbon nanotubes are investigated, on the basis of photonic band-structure calculations. A local graphite-like dielectric tensor is assigned to every point of the tubules, and the effective transverse dielectric function of the composite is computed by solving Maxwell's equations in media with tensor-like dielectric functions. A Maxwell-Garnett-like approach appropriate to the case of infinitely long anisotropic tubules is also developed. Our full calculations indicate that the experimentally measured macroscopic dielectric function of carbon nanotube materials is the result of a strong electromagnetic coupling between the tubes. An analysis of the electric-field pattern associated with this coupling is presented, showing that in the close-packed regime the incident radiation excites a very localized tangential surface plasmon.
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