Imageless microscopy of surface patterns using optical waveguides

K. Cottier, R. Horváth

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

25 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Recent experiments using a grating coupled low-index nanoporous silica supported monomode waveguide have demonstrated that living cells can cause heavy distortion of the grating coupler resonance lines, in some cases even leading to a separation into two resonance peaks. These findings stand in contrast to previously reported data, where simple peak broadening was observed during cell attachment and spreading using less sensitive waveguide designs. In order to explain these observations, we apply the local interference method to simulate the effects of inhomogeneity patterns on the surface of grating coupled planar optical waveguides and obtain the resonant peaks for the modes. It is shown that analyte inhomogeneities affect both the position and shape of the resonant peaks. Depending on the deposited cell or domain size, refractive index contrast and waveguide design, peak shift, peak deformations or peak splitting can be observed. On the basis of simulation data, characteristic parameters of the resonant peaks such as peak width at half maxima, overall width, central position and peak integral are connected for the first time to quantitative parameters of the inhomogeneity patterns; like analyte covered sensor area, surface averaged effective refractive index and domain size. Our results indicate that by careful investigations of the incoupling resonant peaks, quantitative information about sample inhomogeneities at the micrometer scale can be obtained, thus allowing for a new generation of simple, low cost, label free and imageless optical sensors, which are well suited for high throughput screening applications.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)319-327
Number of pages9
JournalApplied Physics B: Lasers and Optics
Volume91
Issue number2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2008

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optical waveguides
microscopy
inhomogeneity
gratings
waveguides
refractivity
data simulation
optical measuring instruments
cells
resonance lines
couplers
attachment
micrometers
screening
silicon dioxide
interference
causes
shift
sensors

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Imageless microscopy of surface patterns using optical waveguides. / Cottier, K.; Horváth, R.

In: Applied Physics B: Lasers and Optics, Vol. 91, No. 2, 05.2008, p. 319-327.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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