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Opt Express. 2008 Mar 3;16(5):3420-9.

Coupling efficiency of light to surface plasmon polariton for single subwavelength holes in a gold film.

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  • 1Karl-Franzens University and Erwin Schrödinger Institute for Nanoscale Research, A-8010 Graz,


The excitation of surface plasmon polaritons (SPP) by focusing a laser beam on single subwavelength holes opened in a thin gold film is studied both experimentally and theoretically. By means of leakage radiation microscopy, quantitative measurements of the light-SPP coupling efficiency are performed for holes with different sizes and shapes. The system is studied theoretically by using a modal expansion method to calculate the fraction of the incident energy which is scattered by the hole into a surface plasmon. We demonstrate that a single subwavelength hole can be used to generate SPP with an efficiency up to 28%.

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