Plasmon–soliton waves in metal-nonlinear dielectric planar structures

Wiktor Walasik 1
1 CLARTE - CLARTE
FRESNEL - Institut FRESNEL
Abstract : In this PhD thesis, we study the properties of stationary transverse magnetic polarized waves in structures composed of a Kerr-type nonlinear dielectric layer, metal and linear dielectric layers. Although these waves, called here plasmon–solitons, have been studied for more than 30 years, there is still no experimental confirmation of their existence due to extremely high nonlinear index modification required to generate such waves in the configurations proposed so far. The goal of this PhD thesis is to develop analytical and numerical models to improve the understanding of plasmon–solitons and to design structures that support these nonlinear waves at low power levels. In the first part of this work, we develop several models to study the properties of plasmon–soliton waves in two types of structures: (i) semi-infinite nonlinear dielectric in contact with metal and linear dielectric layers and (ii) finite-size nonlinear dielectric layer sandwiched between two metal regions (nonlinear slot waveguide). Our models allow us to compute the nonlinear dispersion relations and the corresponding field profiles for such structures. They extend the approaches already proposed in literature and allow us to study configurations that have never been analyzed before. The different models we have developed have various complexity levels and use different approximations. Therefore, they can be used in a complementary way to study the structures of interest. In the second part, we present results obtained using our models for the two types of structures mentioned above. For the first type, we prove that using the four-layer structures that we propose (with a thin linear dielectric layer separating a nonlinear medium and a metal film), it is possible to obtain plasmon–soliton waves at the power levels already used to generate spatial solitons in fully dielectric waveguides. Using the effciency of our methods, we scanned the structure parameter space and found the most promising configurations for the first experimental observation of plasmon–solitons. Then, we study nonlinear slot waveguides. For symmetric nonlinear slot waveguide structures, we find the modes already known in literature and discover the existence of new, higher order modes. For some of the symmetric modes, we observe a symmetry breaking bifurcation giving birth to asymmetric modes in symmetric structure. We study the effects of the core size and the permittivity contrast modifications on the intensity threshold required for the bifurcation. finally, we present the first study of asymmetric nonlinear slot waveguide structures.
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https://tel.archives-ouvertes.fr/tel-01080690
Contributor : Wiktor Walasik <>
Submitted on : Thursday, November 6, 2014 - 12:34:56 AM
Last modification on : Thursday, January 23, 2020 - 6:22:15 PM
Long-term archiving on: Friday, April 14, 2017 - 11:42:15 AM

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Wiktor Walasik. Plasmon–soliton waves in metal-nonlinear dielectric planar structures. Optics [physics.optics]. Aix-Marseille Université; Universitat Politécnica de Catalunya, 2014. English. ⟨tel-01080690⟩

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