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Phys Rev Lett. 2007 Jun 29;98(26):266802. Epub 2007 Jun 27.

Effective wavelength scaling for optical antennas.

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  • 1Institute of Optics, University of Rochester, Rochester, New York, USA.


In antenna theory, antenna parameters are directly related to the wavelength lambda of incident radiation, but this scaling fails at optical frequencies where metals behave as strongly coupled plasmas. In this Letter we show that antenna designs can be transferred to the optical frequency regime by replacing lambda by a linearly scaled effective wavelength lambda(eff)=n(1)+n(2)lambda/lambda(p), with lambda(p) being the plasma wavelength and n(1), n(2) being coefficients that depend on geometry and material properties. It is assumed that the antenna is made of linear segments with radii R << lambda. Optical antennas hold great promise for increasing the efficiency of photovoltaics, light-emitting devices, and optical sensors.

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