Variable temperature, variable-gap Otto prism coupler for use in a vacuum environment

G.F. Cairns, S.M. O'Prey, Paul Dawson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


The field of surface polariton physics really took off with the prism coupling techniques developed by Kretschmann and Raether, and by Otto. This article reports on the construction and operation of a rotatable, in vacuo, variable temperature, Otto coupler with a coupling gap that can be varied by remote control. The specific design attributes of the system offer additional advantages to those of standard Otto systems of (i) temperature variation (ambient to 85 K), and (ii) the use of a valuable, additional reference point, namely the gap-independent reflectance at the Brewster angle at any given, fixed temperature. The instrument is placed firmly in a historical context of developments in the field. The efficacy of the coupler is demonstrated by sample attenuated total reflectance results on films of platinum, niobium, and yttrium barium copper oxide and on aluminum/gallium arsenide (Al/GaAs) Schottky diode structures. (C) 2000 American Institute of Physics. [S0034-6748(00)02411-4].
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4213-4222
Number of pages10
JournalReview of Scientific Instruments
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)
  • Instrumentation


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