Advanced Photonics, Vol. 1, Issue 6, 066003 (2019)
Nonlinear, tunable, and active optical metasurface with liquid film
Shimon Rubin* and Yeshaiahu Fainman
- University of California, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, San Diego, La Jolla, California, United States
Optical metamaterials and metasurfaces, which emerged in the course of the last few decades, have revolutionized our understanding of light and light–matter interaction. While solid materials are naturally employed as key building elements for construction of optical metamaterials mainly due to their structural stability, practically no attention was given to study of liquid-made optical two-dimensional (2-D) metasurfaces and the underlying interaction regimes between surface optical modes and liquids. We theoretically demonstrate that surface plasmon polaritons and slab waveguide modes that propagate within a thin liquid dielectric film trigger optical self-induced interaction facilitated by surface tension effects, which leads to the formation of 2-D optical liquid-made lattices/metasurfaces with tunable symmetry and can be leveraged for tuning of lasing modes. Furthermore, we show that the symmetry breaking of the 2-D optical liquid lattice leads to phase transition and tuning of its topological properties, which allows the formation, destruction, and movement of Dirac-points in the k-space. Our results indicate that optical liquid lattices support extremely low lasing threshold relative to solid dielectric films and have the potential to serve as configurable analogous computation platform.
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