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Opt Express. 2013 Mar 11;21(5):5859-71. doi: 10.1364/OE.21.005859.

Plasmonic interferometers for label-free multiplexed sensing.

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  • 1Electrical and Computer Engineering Department, Lehigh University, Bethlehem, Pennsylvania 18015, USA.


We report a plasmonic interferometric biosensor based on a simple slit-groove metallic nanostructure that monitors the phase changes of surface plasmon polaritons resulting from biomolecular adsorptions. The proposed sensing scheme integrates the strengths of miniaturized plasmonic architectures with sensitive optical interferometry techniques. Sensing peak linewidths as narrow as 7 nm and refractive index resolutions of 1 × 10(-5) RIU were experimentally measured from a miniaturized sensing area of 10 × 30 µm(2) using a collinear transmission setup and a low-cost compact spectrometer. A high-density array of such interferometric sensors was also fabricated to demonstrate its potential for real-time multiplexed sensing using a CCD camera for intensity interrogation. A self-referencing method was introduced to increase the sensitivity and reduce sensor noise for multiplexing measurements. The enhanced sensing performance, small sensor footprint, and simple instrumentation and optical alignment suggest promise to integrate this platform into low-cost label-free biosensing devices with high multiplexing capabilities.

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