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Nano Lett. 2008 Nov;8(11):3893-8. doi: 10.1021/nl8023142. Epub 2008 Oct 10.

Enhanced nanoplasmonic optical sensors with reduced substrate effect.

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  • 1Applied Physics, Chalmers University of Technology, 41296 Göteborg Sweden.


We present a straightforward method to double the refractive index sensitivity of surface-supported nanoplasmonic optical sensors by lifting the metal nanoparticles above the substrate by a dielectric nanopillar. The role of the pillar is to substantially decrease the spatial overlap between the substrate and the enhanced fields generated at plasmon resonance. Data presented for nanodisks and nanoellipsoids supported by pillars of varying heights are found to be in excellent agreement with electrodynamics simulations. The described concepts apply to multitude of plasmonic nanostructures, fabricated by top-down or bottom-up techniques, and are likely to further facilitate the development of novel nanooptical sensors for biomedicine and diagnostics.

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