Diffusionsinduzierte Brechungsindexänderungen in Polymerfilmen als Funktionsprinzip optischer Chemosensoren
In this thesis several polymer materials have been investigated with respect to their application as optical chemo-sensors, which are based on molecule diffusion into thin sensitive layers. The dynamic response of such sensors is mainly controlled by the diffusion kinetics of the molecules in the film. The solution of the diffusion differential equation (2nd Ficks law) in the case of thin films yields the temporary concentration profile of the molecules in the film. Linearity between the refractive index changes and the concentration follows directly from the Lorentz-Lorenz equation and therefore gives the same variation for the index changes. With that the development of the refractive index profile during in- and out-diffusion is well described by the diffusion theory and consequently the dynamic response of the optical sensor can be modelled by a suitable theory. Thin glass/silver/polymer multilayer systems have been characterised with respect to their optical sensing parameters by using metal film enhanced leaky mode spectroscopy. This useful optical technique, which offers the observation of the surface plasmon resonance and the leaky modes of thin dielectric films, has been improved for the analysis of inhomogeneous refractive index profiles by using a transfer-matrix formalism for layered media. Furthermore, waveguide birefringence experiments on thin anisotropic polyimide films as planar lightguides have been carried out to show how the sensitivity of the sensor can be optimised by a suitable choice or a specific modification of the polymer material.