Pages

October 27, 2010

Self-assembly technique could make optical metamaterials cheaply and easily for the first time

MIT Technology Review - Self-assembly technique could make optical metamaterials cheaply and easily for the first time

Materials scientists have been puzzling over how to make metamaterials cheaply and easily. Metamaterials consist of repeating patterns of elements that interact with an electromagnetic wave so as to control and distort its path

At millimetre and microwave wavelengths, these elements are things like wires and c-shaped pieces of metal called split-ring resonators. To make them into metamaterials, they have to be assembled into arrays with vital statistics of the order of the light they are intended to interact with.

Belgium researchers took a handful of polystyrene balls just a few hundred nanometres in diameter and spread them onto a flat gold surface where they naturally self assemble into a hexagonal array with few, if any, defects.

This array then serves as a template for the metamerial. Using a series of steps in which the surface is covered in masks and then etched, the team create a thin slab consisting of a gold-silicon oxide-gold sandwich. However, this slab is punctured by a hexagonal array of holes that correspond to the position of the polystyrene beads.

This is clever, cheap, quick and could be easily scaled





Arxiv - Self-assembled hexagonal double fishnets as negative
index materials


If you liked this article, please give it a quick review on ycombinator, or Reddit, or StumbleUpon. Thanks

Featured articles

Ocean Floor Gold and Copper
   Ocean Floor Mining Company



blog comments powered by Disqus