A waveguide-mode sensor of the spectral-readout type can be used to detect changes in the complex refractive index in the vicinity of the surface of a sensing plate by observing the change in the spectrum of light reflected on the surface. The sensor's configuration can be simplified by adopting a parallel-incidence-type optical setup. To obtain a high sensitivity, the optimization of the sensing-plate structure, incidence angle, and detection wavelength band is essential for the sensor. In the present report, the results predicted by simulations are compared with experimental results in order to evaluate their validity. A discussion of the optimal design for the parallel-incidence-type sensor is also presented, according to the results obtained.
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