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Title of Journal: Plasmonics

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Near-Field Optical Analysis of Plasmonic Nano-Probes for Top-Illumination Tip-Enhanced Raman Scattering

Authors: Neha Mishra, G. V. Pavan Kumar,

Publish Date: 2011/12/10
Volume: 7, Issue:2, Pages: 359-367
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Top-illumination tip-enhanced Raman scattering (TI-TERS) has recently emerged as a promising near-field vibrational spectroscopy method that can be adapted on an upright optical microscope. With a relatively simplified optics, TI-TERS can probe both opaque and transparent samples making them a promising tool in nanoscale chemical analysis. One of the critical components of TI-TERS is the plasmonic nano-tip used to enhance the Raman spectroscopic signature. Herein, we numerically studied the near-field optical properties of conventional gold tip (20 nm radius of curvature) and two varieties of optical antenna-based tips in the context of TI-TERS. Optical antenna-based tips included a 40-nm gold nanoparticle attached to a dielectric tip and a 50-nm equilateral gold nanotriangle attached to a dielectric tip. We evaluated the Raman enhancement spectra as a function of experimental variables such as underlying substrate and angle of the tip with respect to substrate normal. Our analysis revealed that conventional gold tip facilitates superior enhancement and optical antenna-based tips facilitate superior spectral bandwidth and lateral resolution in TI-TERS configuration. Tips with higher enhancement can be harnessed for ultra-sensitive measurements, and tips with broader spectral bandwidth can be utilized to enhance both Stokes and anti-Stokes component of the Raman spectra.



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