In this paper, we study parametric optical rectification that is not due to material properties but emerges from the electrostatic near-field interaction between nanosized metallic domains. The ability to demonstrate this effect comes from samples based on a unique slab waveguide with deeply buried nanometer-thin metallic layers. These samples intensify the presumed rectification mechanism while suppressing competing effects. We describe three experiments that, combined, indicate a non-material-based nonlinear mechanism in our samples. The origin of the nonlinear mechanism responsible for rectification is elucidated by invoking a toy model whose sole nonlinearity comes from the interaction between strictly linear oscillators.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics