Modified boundary conditions and general surface constitutive equations are derived for a very thin interface with some internal structure that separates two different media. The modified boundary conditions are reduced to the standard ones for an idealized steplike sharp interface without additional structure. These modified boundary conditions together with surface constitutive equations and Maxwell equations in the bulk form a complete set of macroscopic equations to describe optical properties of planar interfaces with thicknesses much less then the wavelength of light. In particular, two-dimensional chiral surfaces are considered that are characterized by surface gyrotropic coefficients even if the two different bulk media and the interface are made of nonchiral materials. It is shown that the rotation of the polarization state should occur for the light reflected from such a surface. This result is supported by recent experimental data.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
(240.0240) Optics at surfaces : Optics at surfaces
(240.0310) Optics at surfaces : Thin films
(240.5770) Optics at surfaces : Roughness
(240.6490) Optics at surfaces : Spectroscopy, surface
(240.6700) Optics at surfaces : Surfaces
Dick Bedeaux, Mikhail A. Osipov, and Jan Vlieger, "Reflection of light at structured chiral interfaces," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 21, 2431-2441 (2004)