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Combining label-free and fluorescence operation of Bloch surface wave optical sensors

: Sinibaldi, Alberto; Fieramosca, Antonio; Rizzo, Riccardo; Anopchenko, Aleksei; Danz, Norbert; Munzert, Peter; Magistris, Claudio; Barolo, Claudia; Michelotti, Francesco


Optics Letters 39 (2014), Nr.10, S.2947-2950
ISSN: 0146-9592
Fraunhofer IOF ()

We report on the design, fabrication, and characterization of optical sensors based on Bloch surface waves propagating at the truncation edge of one-dimensional photonic crystals. The sensors can be simultaneously operated in both a label-free mode, where small refractive index changes at the surface are detected, and a fluorescence mode, where the fluorescence from a novel heptamethyne dye label in the proximity of the surface is collected. The two modes operate in the near-infrared spectral range with the same configuration of the optical reading apparatus. The limit of detection is shown to be smaller than that of equivalent surface plasmon sensors and the fluorescence collection efficiency is such that it can be efficiently analyzed by the same camera sensor used for label-free operation.