A detailed mathematical analysis along with a theoretical model for the modes supported at the interface of a metal and periodically stratified medium (Bragg structure) is presented. The modes that are supported at the interface of a plasmon active metal (such as gold) and a Bragg structure are commonly known as surface plasmon-Bragg modes. We found that these modes have effective indices lower than any of the material indices of the layers comprising the Bragg structure, and they are highly dispersive when compared to the conventional surface plasmon modes that are supported at the metal and dielectric interface. The plausible physical explanation behind the strong dispersive behavior of the surface plasmon-Bragg mode is provided. Finally, the comparison of dissipation loss for the surface plasmon-Bragg modes is investigated and it has been shown that there is more than fivefold enhancement in the magnitude of propagation lengths as compared to the conventional surface plasmon mode.
© 2009 Optical Society of America
Optics at Surfaces
Original Manuscript: June 5, 2009
Revised Manuscript: August 10, 2009
Manuscript Accepted: August 10, 2009
Published: September 1, 2009
Ritwick Das and Rajan Jha, "On the modal characteristics of surface plasmon polaritons at a metal-Bragg interface at optical frequencies," Appl. Opt. 48, 4904-4908 (2009)