Indexed on: 20 Jul '13Published on: 20 Jul '13Published in: Plasmonics
In this study, we theoretically investigate the sensing potential of 2D nano- and micro-ribbon grating structuration on the surface of Kretschmann-based surface plasmon resonance (SPR) biosensors when they are employed for detection of biomolecular binding events. Numerical simulations were carried out by employing a model based on the hybridization of two classical methods, the Fourier modal method and the finite element method. Our calculations confirm the importance of light manipulation by means of structuration of the plasmonic thin film surfaces on the nano- and micro-scales. Not only does it highlight the geometric parameters that allow the sensitivity enhancement compared with the response of the conventional SPR biosensor based on a flat surface but also describes the transition from the regime where the propagating surface plasmon mode dominates to the regime where the localized surface plasmon mode dominates. An exhaustive mapping of the biosensing potential of the 2D nano- and micro-structured biosensors surface is presented, varying the structural parameters related to the ribbon grating dimensions, i.e., the widths and thicknesses. The nano- and micro-structuration also leads to the creation of regions on biosensor chips that are characterized by strongly enhanced electromagnetic (EM) fields. New opportunities for further improving the sensitivity are offered if localization of biomolecules can be carried out in these regions of high EM fields. The continuum of nano- and micro-ribbon structured biosensors described in this study should prove a valuable tool for developing sensitive and reliable 2D-structured plasmonic biosensors.