Abstract

A polarization detector based on the excitation of surface plasmon polaritons on the periodically corrugated metal surface of Schottky structures is presented. The surface modes are only excited by light having the appropriate polarization; they are leaky at the metal–semiconductor interface and are thus radiated into the semiconductor, where they generate charge carriers. By this mechanism the photocurrent of the device is enhanced and depends strongly on the polarization angle of the incident light. By use of two detectors with different grating orientations the polarization of the light can be determined unambiguously.

© 1989 Optical Society of America

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