Size reduction of optical components can be achieved by manipulating light at sub-wavelength scales. Of practical interest, metallic nanoparticle (MNP) chains supporting localized surface plasmons (LSP) can transmit light below the diffraction limit [1] and thus realize ultra-compact couplers [2]. However, their insertion in photonic integrated circuits requires the optimization of their optical coupling to conventional dielectric waveguides. In the present configuration (inserts of Fig. 1(a-b)), the MNP chain is deposited on the top of a dielectric waveguide, and its excitation occurs via the evanescent field of the waveguide. We use a 3D finite-difference time-domain calculation method (FDTD Solutions Lumerical) to investigate the coupling of the MNP chain to two types of slab dielectric waveguides (Si3N4 and SOI (silicon on insulator)) at telecom wavelengths. The NP dimensions are chosen in such a way that the MNP chain can be excited in this wavelength range. The LSP resonance wavelength is fixed at 1410 nm. Since this resonance strongly depends on the optical index environment of the NP, the optimal NP size is different for the two waveguide structures. In each case, the MNP chain is composed of 50 rod-shaped gold nanoparticles deposited on the slab waveguide.

© 2011 IEEE

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