Fundamental behavior of electric field enhancements in the gaps between closely spaced nanostructures

Jeffrey M. McMahon, Stephen K. Gray, George C. Schatz

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We demonstrate that the electric field enhancement that occurs in a gap between two closely spaced nanostructures, such as metallic nanoparticles, is the result of a transverse electromagnetic waveguide mode. We derive an explicit semi-analytic equation for the enhancement as a function of gap size, which we show has a universal qualitative behavior in that it applies irrespective of the material or geometry of the nanostructures and even in the presence of surface plasmons. Examples of perfect electrically conducting and Ag thin-wire antennas and a dimer of Ag spheres are presented and discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Article number115428
JournalPhysical Review B - Condensed Matter and Materials Physics
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Mar 14 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics

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