The fact that surface-induced damping rate of surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) in metal nanoparticles increases with the decrease of particle size is well known. This damping effect introduces additional loss to that of bulk metal and results in smaller enhancement of luminescence. We show that this rate also increases with the degree of the mode confinement, hence damping of the higher order nonradiative SPP modes in spherical particles is greatly enhanced relative to damping of the fundamental (dipole) SPP mode. Since higher order modes are the ones responsible for quenching of luminescence in the vicinity of metal surfaces, the degree of quenching increases resulting in a substantial decrease in the amount of attainable enhancement of the luminescence.
Greg Sun, Jacob B. Khurgin, Wei-Yi Tsai, and Din Ping Tsai, "Ultimate limit of nanoplasmonic field enhancement
(Conference Presentation)," Proc. SPIE 9918, Metamaterials, Metadevices, and Metasystems 2016, 99182D (Presented at SPIE Nanoscience + Engineering: September 01, 2016; Published: 9 November 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2238964.5159519578001.
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