Surface plasmon resonators can drastically redistribute incident light over different output wave vectors and polarizations. This can lead for instance to sub-diffraction sized nanoapertures in metal films that beam and to nanoparticle antennas that enable efficient conversion of photons between spatial modes, or helicity channels. We present a polarimetric Fourier microscope as a new experimental tool to completely characterize the angle-dependent polarization-resolved scattering of single nanostructures. Polarimetry allows determining the full Stokes parameters from just six Fourier images. The degree of polarization and the polarization ellipse are measured for each scattering direction collected by a high NA objective. We showcase the method on plasmonic bullseye antennas in a metal film, which are known to beam light efficiently. We find rich results for the polarization state of the beamed light, including complete conversion of input polarization from linear to circular and from one helicity to another. In addition to uncovering new physics for plasmonic groove antennas, the described technique projects to have a large impact in nanophotonics, in particular towards the investigation of a broad range of phenomena ranging from photon spin Hall effects, polarization to orbital angular momentum transfer and design of plasmon antennas.

A. Halpin
Sci. Rep.
Resonant Nanophotonics

Osorio, C.I, Mohtashami, A, & Koenderink, A.F. (2015). K-space polarimetry of bullseye plasmon antennas. Sci. Rep., 5(Article number: 9966), 1–7. doi:10.1038/srep09966