The existing analyses on extraordinary optical transmission through apertures on a metal screen have been carried out assuming perfect conductivity or by examining arrays of closely spaced holes with subwavelength dimensions. We present an electromagnetic analysis of a single hole (modeled by use of an array of distant holes) in a finitely conducting metal membrane, applying no approximations. We demonstrate that finite conductivity is not of remarkable importance with small hole-diameter-to-wavelength ratios in the absence of strong resonances. However, if the angle of incidence of a plane wave is such that surface plasmons are excited, substantial enhancement of the transmittance can be observed, and the effect of finite conductivity will no longer be negligible. Our analysis also reveals that transmission of small apertures in highly conducting membranes can be described by approximate analytical formulas if surface waves are not excited, but with poor conductors the full electromagnetic analysis should be applied.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: August 5, 2003
Revised Manuscript: October 7, 2003
Manuscript Accepted: October 14, 2003
Published: March 1, 2004
Tuomas Vallius, Jari Turunen, Masud Mansuripur, and Seppo Honkanen, "Transmission through single subwavelength apertures in thin metal films and effects of surface plasmons," J. Opt. Soc. Am. A 21, 456-463 (2004)