Plasmonic materials have conventionally been gold and silver in optical frequencies. However, these conventional metals in the near-infrared (NIR) and visible spectral ranges suffer from problems such as large losses. With the advent of metamaterials, these metals pose a serious bottle-neck in the performances of metamaterial-based devices not only due to the large losses associated with them in the NIR and visible wavelengths, but also their magnitudes of real permittivity are too large. Both of these problems could be solved by using semiconductors as plasmonic materials. Heavily doped zinc oxide and indium oxide can exhibit losses that are nearly four times smaller than silver at the telecommunication wavelength with small negative real permittivity. In this paper, we present the development of a low loss semiconductor plasmonic material, aluminum doped zinc oxide (AZO).© (2010) COPYRIGHT SPIE--The International Society for Optical Engineering. Downloading of the abstract is permitted for personal use only.