Surface plasmon coupling of a TM polarized free space incident beam by means of the + 1st or the −2nd order of a smooth corrugation grating at a metal surface causes the cancellation of the diffracted −1st order free space beam and a maximum of the 0th order Fresnel reflection whereas the converse occurs midway between these two conditions. This implies that angular tilting of the element or wavelength scanning provokes the switching between the −1st and 0th reflected orders. This plasmon-mediated effect on propagating free-space beams exhibits remarkably low absorption losses.
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