When a surface plasmon propagates along a microrough grating, it interacts with the periodic plus the random roughness and emits light into the diffuse background, which can present intensity maxima called diffuse light bands. We reexamine previous studies on these bands within the framework of recent studies on photonic surfaces and show that the phenomenon of diffuse light provides an experimental technique for directly imaging the dispersion relation of surface plasmons, including the gap that, under appropriate circumstances, opens in the reciprocal grating space.
© 2004 Optical Society of America
(050.1950) Diffraction and gratings : Diffraction gratings
(240.5770) Optics at surfaces : Roughness
(240.6680) Optics at surfaces : Surface plasmons
(290.5880) Scattering : Scattering, rough surfaces
Ricardo A. Depine and Silvia Ledesma, "Direct visualization of surface-plasmon bandgaps in the diffuse background of metallic gratings," Opt. Lett. 29, 2216-2218 (2004)