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Nanomaterials 2017, 7(8), 221; doi:10.3390/nano7080221

Broadband Ultra-Deep Sub-Diffraction-Limit Optical Focusing by Metallic Graded-Index (MGRIN) Lenses

1,2
,
1,2
,
1,2
and
1,2,*
1
Key Laboratory of Micro/Nano Systems for Aerospace, Ministry of Education, Xi’an 710072, China
2
Key Laboratory of Micro- and Nano-Electro-Mechanical Systems of Shaanxi Province, Northwestern Polytechnical University, Xi’an 710072, China
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 July 2017 / Revised: 8 August 2017 / Accepted: 9 August 2017 / Published: 12 August 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Multifunctional Metallic Nanomaterials)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [2750 KB, uploaded 12 August 2017]   |  

Abstract

The development of techniques for efficiently confining energy in the visible and infrared spectral regions to the deep subwavelength spatial scale with dimensions as small as a few nanometers would have great significance for scientific research and engineering practices. Such an ability to manipulate light is impossible for conventional dielectric lenses due to the diffraction limit. Here, we propose a metallic graded-index (MGRIN) lens formed by an array of coupled metallic waveguides with identical nanoscale widths embedded by index-varying dielectrics to enable the optical nanofocusing. The focusing mechanism of the MGRIN lens is theoretically investigated based on Hamiltonian optics, which are verified by the finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) method. Numerical results reveal that an ultra-deep subwavelength focus of 8 nm (λ/500) with a long focal depth (1.93λ) and enhanced field intensity can be achieved. Moreover, the nanofocusing capability of the MGRIN lens without redesigning the structure can be well kept when the incident wavelength changes over a broad range from visible to infrared. Our design of optical nanofocusing shows great potential for use in nano-optics and nanotechnology. View Full-Text
Keywords: nanofocusing; coupled metallic waveguides; metallic graded-index lens; Hamiltonian optics nanofocusing; coupled metallic waveguides; metallic graded-index lens; Hamiltonian optics
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Zhu, Y.; Yuan, W.; Sun, H.; Yu, Y. Broadband Ultra-Deep Sub-Diffraction-Limit Optical Focusing by Metallic Graded-Index (MGRIN) Lenses. Nanomaterials 2017, 7, 221.

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