Date of Award

Winter 12-2018

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Optical Engineering


Department of Physics and Optical Engineering

First Advisor

Siahmakoun, Azad

Second Advisor

Kirkpatrick, Scott

Third Advisor

Kim, Dong Hwan


We demonstrated a new method of evanescent coupling of light, using surface plasmon polaritons (SPP) and a prism of smaller index of refraction, crystalline silicon (Si) waveguide. This SPP coupler is designed for the maximum light coupling at the wavelength of 1550 nm. This device is comprised of a dielectric prism, airgap, silver (Ag) film, Si waveguide and silicon dioxide (SiO2) substrate. MATLAB and numerical finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) analysis are used to simulate evanescent light coupling into the Si waveguide through SPP. The simulation predicts 50% light coupling for p-polarized light and less than 10% for s-polarized light at an optimum incident angle of 44°. This device is fabricated on SOI wafer by typical cleanroom technologies, via lithography, XeF2 dry-etching, metal sputtering and lift-off process. The fabricated device exhibited 10% light coupling for p-polarized light and 0.2% for s-polarized light at 1550 nm an incident angle of 44°.

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