Surface plasmon resonance sensitivity of metal nanostructures: Physical basis and universal scaling in metal nanoshells

Prashant Jain, Mostafa A. El-Sayed

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


In this letter, we show using extended Mie theory simulations that the sensitivity of the surface plasmon resonance (SPR) of a dielectric core-metal nanoshell increases near-exponentially as the ratio of the shell thickness-to-core radius is decreased. The plasmon sensitivity thus shows the same universal scaling behavior established recently for plasmon coupling in metal nanoshells and that in metal nanoparticle pairs. From these observations, we propose that the sensitivity is determined by the ease of surface polarization of the electrons in the nanostructure by the light. This can be used as a generalized physical principle for designing plasmonic nanostructures for effective SPR chemical and biological sensing.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)17451-17454
Number of pages4
JournalJournal of Physical Chemistry C
Issue number47
StatePublished - Nov 29 2007
Externally publishedYes


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Surfaces, Coatings and Films
  • Energy(all)

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