Application Exchange

Mie scattering off plasmonic nanoparticles

Romain Fleury, UT Austin

This is a general model to simulate light scattering off plasmonic or dielectric nano-particles or spherical nano-structures. I computed the total scattering cross-section (SCS), absorption cross-section (ACS), extinction cross-section (ECS), radar cross-section (RCS) and differential scattering cross-section (dSCS) of gold nanoparticles in the near UV, visible and near infrared range. Material properties are taken from peer-reviewed experimental data (P. B. Johnson and R. W. Christy, “Optical Constants of the Noble Metals,” Phys. Rev. B, vol. 6, no. 12, pp. 4370–4379, Dec. 1972). The model can be used as a starting point to compute the absorption and scattering properties of more complicated structures or metamolecules, with broken spherical symmetry and several constituents. This model completes the tutorial file "Optical Scattering off of a gold nano-sphere", by providing efficient ways to compute the total cross-sections. The obtained results match analytical predictions based on Mie theory.

NB : Models compatible with COMSOL 4.3 and 4.3a are available.To visualize the results, you may need to run the file.

User Comments

Xiaoxin wang
Mar 12, 2013 at 8:15pm UTC

This model will be helpful to my research.
However,my computer can not open version 4.3a.

Can you provide the model in comsol 4.3 version?

Thanks a lot.

Mar 17, 2013 at 5:43pm UTC

Thank u for your time

also this model can not open in my computer.
also please can u provide it in comsol 4.3 or 4.2 ?

Thanks in advance

Romain Fleury
Entry submitter
Mar 18, 2013 at 1:56pm UTC

I have posted a second version in 4.3. Feel free to leave a review after you use the file.

Thank you.

Mar 19, 2013 at 4:37am UTC

Kindly, if possible, could you provide the same in v4.2, as I've COMSOL v4.2.
Thanks a lot!

Xiaoxin wang
Mar 19, 2013 at 3:54pm UTC

Thanks. The comsol 4.3 runs well in my computer.

Mar 21, 2013 at 12:04pm UTC

thank u very much. it works so well

Jul 19, 2013 at 3:20am UTC

We add in results: results->3D plot group 2->volume 1, and in the expression, we plot emw.Ez, emw.Ebz, and emw.relEz. We know emw.relEz is the scattered field, and there should be no field in the sphere. But we observed the field in the graphic. Is there anything wrong? Thank u.

Oct 26, 2013 at 8:45am UTC

Thanks..your model was really helpful

Angelo Garruzzo
Nov 13, 2013 at 9:20pm UTC

hi may I ask a matlab version of the model... I am interested in the script! I can't open the version that you provided, it would be nice if you could save the model as m-file!
thank you in advance

Dec 16, 2013 at 10:42pm UTC

Hi, may I ask for model in 4.2 version.
Thank you!

Feb 8, 2014 at 9:42am UTC

Thank you very much !

Feb 28, 2014 at 8:56am UTC

Thank you very much for your sharing.

xiaorui tian
Mar 6, 2014 at 8:20am UTC

thanks so much! it helps a lot.

Bhavyabhushan Yadav A.V
May 27, 2014 at 4:35am UTC

Hi All,

i am new to comsol, can anyone guide me to find tutorials related to modelling plasmonic structures using comsol.

Phil Kinnane
May 27, 2014 at 9:11pm UTC

By visiting the Model Gallery ( and typing "plasmonics" in the Quick search field, you can get a number of examples.

Jun 18, 2014 at 3:08pm UTC

Thank you. Your models are really helpful.
In your models, an variable ofact was used to redefine nx/ny/nz to onx/ony/onz.
However, in the model "scatter on a substrate"( nx/ny/nz are directly used.
I'm confused on this difference.
I'm wondering at which conditions, onx/ony/onz instead of nx/ny/nz should be used? Or both method give the same results?

Jun 22, 2014 at 3:13pm UTC


I wanted to use this model for particles in a water. after changing the permittivity of air to that of water, I get a false SCS (monotonically rising).
I also tried changing the permittivity to 1.01 to see what happens, and also got similar results...
Can you please explain more about how you calculate the ACS and SCS?

Jun 22, 2015 at 1:06pm UTC

I also get monotonically rising SCS for a similar model. What Solution did you find?

Nov 25, 2015 at 11:13pm UTC

Thank you for your model.
Could you explain me why are you building reflection index from lambda, using an integration to define reflection index, when you can just take the data from the table?

Jungmin Kim
Jan 12, 2016 at 8:24pm UTC

Thanks so much!
It was really helpful.

Mar 10, 2016 at 2:13pm UTC

Thank you so much for sharing your model.

Jun 13, 2016 at 2:10am UTC

thank you so much

Manasi Palwankar
May 16, 2017 at 3:38pm UTC

Thank you so much for the model. Can you please explain the formula for differential scattering cross section (dSCS) used in the model? How can this modified to a 2D model?

Jul 17, 2017 at 9:04am UTC

2D model only gives scattering in plane, dear

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