Plasmonics offer an exciting way to mediate the interaction between light and matter, allowing strong field enhancement and confinement, large absorption and scattering at resonance. However, simultaneous realization of ultra-narrow band perfect absorption and electromagnetic field enhancement is challenging due to the intrinsic high optical losses and radiative damping in metals. Here, we propose an all-metal plasmonic absorber with an absorption bandwidth less than 8 nm and polarization insensitive absorptivity exceeding 99%. Unlike traditional Metal-Dielectric-Metal configurations, we demonstrate that the narrowband perfect absorption and field enhancement are ascribed to the vertical gap plasmonic mode in the deep subwavelength scale, which has a high quality factor of 120 and mode volume of about 10(-4) x (lambda(res)/n)(3). Based on the coupled mode theory, we verify that the diluted field enhancement is proportional to the absorption, and thus perfect absorption is critical to maximum field enhancement. In addition, the proposed perfect absorber can be operated as a refractive index sensor with a sensitivity of 885 nm/RIU and figure of merit as high as 110. It provides a new design strategy for narrow band perfect absorption and local field enhancement, and has potential applications in biosensors, filters and nonlinear optics.
2016. Vol. 6, 24063