Abstract

A novel fiber-coupled indium tin oxide (ITO) coated glass slide sensor for performing surface plasmon polariton chemical monitoring in the 3.5  μm mid-infrared (IR) range is reported. Efficient mid-IR fiber coupling is achieved with 3D laser written waveguides, and the coupling of glass waveguide modes to ITO surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) is driven by the varying phase matching conditions of different aqueous analytes across the anomalous dispersion range determined by their molecular fingerprints. By means of using both a mid-IR fiber supercontinuum source and a diode laser, the excitation of SPPs is demonstrated. The sensor sensitivity is tested by discriminating CH from OH features of ethanol in water solutions, demonstrating an instrumental ethanol limit of detection of 0.02% in a wide concentration range of at least 0%–50%. The efficient optical monitoring of mid-IR SPPs in smart glass could have a broad range of applications in biological and chemical sensing.

© 2016 Optical Society of America

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