Abstract

A triple-output Mach–Zehnder interferometric sensor operating with long-range surface plasmon–polaritons at free-space wavelengths near 1310 nm was constructed by etching a microfluidic channel through the top cladding (Cytop) of one arm of the interferometer to expose the Au stripe embedded therein. Optical bulk (refractometric) sensing was conducted by sequentially flowing sample solutions with different refractive indices through the microfluidic channel and measuring the optical powers of the three outputs, which responded sinusoidally and were separated by 2π/3  rad as expected in theory. Three detection schemes are analyzed and compared, demonstrating that the device benefits from a 3× larger dynamic range and the ability to suppress common perturbations relative to its single-output counterpart, thus improving the detection limit. The device is promising for biosensing applications.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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Supplementary Material (2)

NameDescription
» Visualization 1: AVI (1838 KB)      Associated with Fig. 3.
» Visualization 2: AVI (2376 KB)      Associated with Fig. 4.

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