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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: Andrew M. Weiner
  • Vol. 21, Iss. 3 — Feb. 11, 2013
  • pp: 3055–3066

Polarized spectral combs probe optical fiber surface plasmons

Christophe Caucheteur, Valérie Voisin, and Jacques Albert  »View Author Affiliations

Optics Express, Vol. 21, Issue 3, pp. 3055-3066 (2013)

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The high-order cladding modes of conventional single mode fiber come in semi-degenerate pairs corresponding to mostly radially or mostly azimuthally polarized light. Using tilted fiber Bragg gratings to excite these mode families separately, we show how plasmonic coupling to a thin gold coating on the surface of the fiber modifies the effective indices of the modes differently according to polarization and to mode order. In particular, we show the existence of a single “apolarized” grating resonance, with equal effective index for all input polarization states. This special resonance provides direct evidence of the excitation of a surface plasmon on the metal surface but also an absolute wavelength reference that allows for the precise localization of the most sensitive resonances in refractometric and biochemical sensing applications. Two plasmon interrogation methods are proposed, based on wavelength and amplitude measurements. Finally, we use a biotin-streptavidin biomolecular recognition experiment to demonstrate that differential spectral transmission measurements of a fine comb of cladding mode resonances in the vicinity of the apolarized resonance provide the most accurate method to extract information from plasmon-assisted Tilted fiber Bragg gratings, down to pM concentrations and at least 10−5 refractive index changes.

© 2013 OSA

OCIS Codes
(060.2370) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber optics sensors
(240.6680) Optics at surfaces : Surface plasmons
(060.3735) Fiber optics and optical communications : Fiber Bragg gratings

ToC Category:
Optics at Surfaces

Original Manuscript: December 10, 2012
Revised Manuscript: January 14, 2013
Manuscript Accepted: January 17, 2013
Published: January 31, 2013

Christophe Caucheteur, Valérie Voisin, and Jacques Albert, "Polarized spectral combs probe optical fiber surface plasmons," Opt. Express 21, 3055-3066 (2013)

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