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Opt Express. 2012 Nov 19;20(24):26969-77. doi: 10.1364/OE.20.026969.

Simultaneous retrieval of fluidic refractive index and surface adsorbed molecular film thickness using silicon wire waveguide biosensors.

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National Research Council Canada, Ottawa, ON, Canada.


For silicon wire based ring resonator biosensors, we investigate the simultaneous retrieval of changes in the fluidic refractive index ∆n(c) and surface adsorbed molecular film thickness ∆d(F). This can be achieved by monitoring the resonance shifts of the sensors operating in the TE and TM polarizations at the same time. Although this procedure is straightforward in principle, significant retrieval errors can be introduced due to deviations in the sensor waveguide cross-sections from their nominal values in the range commonly encountered for silicon photonic wire devices. We propose a method of determining the fabricated waveguide size using the group indices derived from measured free spectral range (FSR) of the resonators. We further demonstrate that using experimentally measured group index values, the waveguide size can be determined to accuracies of ± 2 nm in width and ± 1 nm in height. By using this procedure, ∆n(c) and ∆d(F) can be obtained to a precision of within 10% of the true values using optically measurable parameters, improving the retrieval accuracy by more than 3 times.

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