Förster resonance energy transfer (FRET) interacted with localized surface plasmon (LSP) gives us the ability to overcome inadequate transfer of energy between donor and acceptor nanocrystals (NCs). In this paper, we show LSP-enhanced FRET in colloidal photosensors of NCs in operation, resulting in substantially enhanced photosensitivity. The proposed photosensitive device is a layered self-assembled colloidal platform consisting of separated monolayers of the donor and the acceptor colloidal NCs with an intermediate metal nanoparticle (MNP) layer made of gold interspaced by polyelectrolyte layers. Using LBL assembly, we fabricated and comparatively studied seven types of such NC-monolayer devices (containing only donor, only acceptor, Au MNP-donor, Au MNP-acceptor, donor-acceptor bilayer, donor-Au MNP-acceptor trilayer, and acceptor-Au MNP-donor reverse trilayer). In these structures, we revealed the effect of LSP-enhanced FRET and exciton interactions from the donor NCs layer to the acceptor NCs layer. Compared to a single acceptor NC device, we observed a significant extension in operating wavelength range and a substantial photosensitivity enhancement (2.91-fold) around the LSP resonance peak of Au MNPs in the LSP-enhanced FRET trilayer structure. Moreover, we present a theoretical model for the intercoupled donor-Au MNP-acceptor structure subject to the plasmon-mediated nonradiative energy transfer. The obtained numerical results are in excellent agreement with the systematic experimental studies done in our work. The potential to modify the energy transfer through mastering the exciton-plasmon interactions and its implication in devices make them attractive for applications in nanophotonic devices and sensors.
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