Enhancing the efficiency of slit-coupling to surface-plasmon-polaritons via dispersion engineering

R. Mehfuz, M. W. Maqsood, K. J. Chau
2010 Optics Express  
We describe a simple method for enhancing the efficiency of coupling from a free-space transverse-magnetic (TM) plane-wave mode into a surface-plasmon-polariton (SPP) mode. The coupling structure consists a metal film with a dielectric-filled slit and a planar, dielectric layer on the slit-exit side of the metal film. By varying the dielectric layer thickness, the wavevector of the SPP mode on the metal surface can be tuned to match the wavevector magnitude of the modes emanating from the slit
more » ... xit, enabling high-efficiency radiation coupling into the SPP mode at the slit exit. An optimal dielectric layer thickness 100 nm yields a visible-frequency SPP coupling efficiency 4 times greater than the SPP coupling efficiency without the dielectric layer. Commensurate coupling enhancement is observed spanning the regime 400 nm ≤ λ 0 ≤ 700 nm. We map the dependence of the SPP coupling efficiency on the slit width, the dielectric-layer thickness, and the incident wavelength to fully characterize this SPP coupling methodology.
doi:10.1364/oe.18.018206 pmid:20721210 fatcat:s3im67funnfu3g4xm54dsjcyte