Abstract

While it is generally accepted that adding loss dampens and broadens plasmonic resonances, here we find adding losses can actually narrow the linewidth and increase the resonance peak. We show that the scattering cross section of a metal nanoparticle in a lossy dielectric medium is 1 order of magnitude larger than the same nanoparticle in a lossless dielectric. The full width at half-maximum of the scattering spectrum is a quarter of that of the non-absorbing medium. The peak narrowing and increased scattering have benefits for biomarkers where high scattering efficiency and narrow linewidths (for denser multiplexing) are desired. The enhanced scattering and absorption in the surrounding lossy medium are also beneficial for photovoltaic applications.

© 2019 Optical Society of America

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