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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 18, Iss. 3 — Feb. 1, 2010
  • pp: 2588–2600

Interaction of light with a metal wedge: the role of diffraction in shaping energy flow

Yonggang Xi, Yun Suk Jung, and Hong Koo Kim  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 18, Issue 3, pp. 2588-2600 (2010)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.18.002588


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Abstract

When a light wave hits a metal wedge structure, the metal surfaces respond to the incident light by generating both free-space and surface-bound waves. Here we present a physical model that elucidates electromagnetic interactions of an incoming planar wave with a simple semi-infinite 90° metal wedge. We show that a metal wedge structure possesses an intrinsic capability of directing the incident power around the corner into the forward direction. Interplay of the boundary diffraction wave and the incident and reflection waves in the near field region of a metal corner is found to form a basis of the funneling phenomena that are commonly observed in metal nanoslit structures. Theory and experiment reveal that the incident wave propagating parallel to the sidewall destructively interferes with the boundary diffraction wave forming a depleted-energy-flow region along the glancing angle direction. A physical understanding of various electromagnetic phenomena associated with a metal wedge structure confirms rich potential of the simple structure as an elemental building block of complex metal nanostructures.

© 2010 Optical Society of America

OCIS Codes
(050.1940) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction
(050.1960) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction theory
(240.6680) Optics at surfaces : Surface plasmons
(260.3910) Physical optics : Metal optics

ToC Category:
Diffraction and Gratings

History
Original Manuscript: December 21, 2009
Revised Manuscript: January 14, 2010
Manuscript Accepted: January 19, 2010
Published: January 22, 2010

Citation
Yonggang Xi, Yun Suk Jung, and Hong Koo Kim, "Interaction of light with a metal wedge: the role of diffraction in shaping energy flow," Opt. Express 18, 2588-2600 (2010)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-18-3-2588


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