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Opt Express. 2006 Jan 23;14(2):847-57.

Tuning localized plasmons in nanostructured substrates for surface-enhanced Raman scattering.


Comprehensive reflectivity mapping of the angular dispersion of nanostructured arrays comprising of inverted pyramidal pits is demonstrated. By comparing equivalently structured dielectric and metallic arrays, diffraction and plasmonic features are readily distinguished. While the diffraction features match expected theory, localised plasmons are also observed with severely flattened energy dispersions. Using pit arrays with identical pitch, but graded pit dimensions, energy scaling of the localized plasmon is observed. These localised plasmons are found to match a simple model which confines surface plasmons onto the pit sidewalls thus allowing an intuitive picture of the plasmons to be developed. This model agrees well with a 2D finite-difference time-domain simulation which shows the same dependence on pit dimensions. We believe these tuneable plasmons are responsible for the surface-enhancement of the Raman scattering (SERS) of an attached layer of benzenethiol molecules. Such SERS substrates have a wide range of applications both in security, chemical identification, environmental monitoring and healthcare.

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