Elementary-field modeling of surface-plasmon excitation with partially coherent light

Applied Physics B (Impact Factor: 1.86). 10/2010; 101(1):273-282. DOI: 10.1007/s00340-010-4012-z


We present a mathematical model and its numerical implementation for the analysis of the interaction of spatially partially
coherent electromagnetic fields with micro- and nanostructured objects. The model is based on the decomposition of the incident
field into a set of fully coherent but mutually uncorrelated elementary field modes, and the use of the Fourier Modal Method
(FMM) with the S-matrix propagation algorithm. We apply the model to studies of the excitation of surface plasmons in thin
metallic slabs, nanowires, and resonant structures. We demonstrate, e.g., that the plasmon excitation efficiency is not essentially
affected by the degree of spatial coherence. However, certain plasmon interference effects can be efficiently smoothed out
by using illumination with reduced coherence.

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