We investigate guided modes in the asymmetric waveguide structure with a left-handed material (LHM) layer surrounded by air and metal. A graphical method is proposed to determine the guided modes. New properties of the oscillating and surface guided modes, such as absence of the fundamental mode, coexistence of the oscillating and surface guided modes, fast attenuation of the surface guided modes, and mode degeneracy, are analyzed in detail. We also investigate dispersive characteristics of the metal-LHM-air optical waveguide. The propagation constant increases with decreasing slab thickness for the first-order oscillating mode, which is different from that in traditional metal-cladding waveguides.
© 2011 Chinese Optics LettersPDF Article