Swapnali S. Shende, Sarang Pendharker, Zubin Jacob, and Neda Nazemifard. 6/6/2016.

Total internal reflection fluorescence microscopy to investigate the distribution of residual bitumen in oil sands tailings

. ACS Energy and Fuels, 30.

A major waste byproduct of oil sands in situ extraction is oil sands tailings, which are a mixture of water, clay, and residual bitumen. These tailings represent a huge ecological footprint in the form of tailings ponds, which not only render large land areas unusable but also prevent reuse of water. The slow dewatering of the tailings ponds poses a major challenge to the industry. The presence of complex inorganic–organic bitumen–clay mixtures in these tailings contributes to this problem. Hence, understanding the nature of the bitumen–clay association and the effect of bitumen on clay particle–particle interactions is important for the development of more effective chemicals or processes to accelerate particle aggregation and sedimentation during dewatering. Previous studies that investigate these interactions used techniques that are sensitive only toward inorganic clay but not sensitive towards organic bitumen. Here, we use a high-resolution total internal reflection fluorescence (TIRF) microscopy to help identify the accurate location and distribution of bitumen in mature fine tailings (MFT) samples. We report the first adaptation of TIRF beyond cell biology for visualization of bitumen and its interaction with clay. The high signal-to-noise ratio of TIRF microscopy and a high contrast between the clay and residual bitumen provide images that reveal a wealth of information about the bitumen coverage on clay as well as clay–clay aggregates and how the bitumen positions itself within these aggregates. These images confirm the presence of hydrophobic fine clay agglomerates along with the hydrophilic clay particles in MFT. It is also observed that bitumen coats clay particles, bridges clay agglomerates, and is mostly absent as free bitumen in the bulk of the MFT sample. Our work paves the way for the use of nanophotonic tools in oil sands imaging and provides strategic suggestions for the development of better methods for clay sedimentation and bitumen recovery.

See also: Extreme-Materials
Augustine M Urbas, Zubin Jacob, and et. al. 8/9/2016.

Roadmap on optical metamaterials

. Journal of Optics, 18, 9.

Optical metamaterials have redefined how we understand light in notable ways: from strong response to optical magnetic fields, negative refraction, fast and slow light propagation in zero index and trapping structures, to flat, thin and perfect lenses. Many rules of thumb regarding optics, such as μ = 1, now have an exception, and basic formulas, such as the Fresnel equations, have been expanded. The field of metamaterials has developed strongly over the past two decades. Leveraging structured materials systems to generate tailored response to a stimulus, it has grown to encompass research in optics, electromagnetics, acoustics and, increasingly, novel hybrid material responses. This roadmap is an effort to present emerging fronts in areas of optical metamaterials that could contribute and apply to other research communities. By anchoring each contribution in current work and prospectively discussing future potential and directions, the authors are translating the work of the field in selected areas to a wider community and offering an incentive for outside researchers to engage our community where solid links do not already exist.

See also: Extreme-Materials
Sarang Pendharker, Swapnali S. Shende, Ward Newman, Stephen Ogg, Neda Nazemifard, and Zubin Jacob. 11/22/2016.

Axial super-resolution evanescent wave tomography

. Optics Letters, 41, 23, Pp. 5499-5502.

Optical tomographic reconstruction of a three-dimensional (3D) nanoscale specimen is hindered by the axial diffraction limit, which is 2–3 times worse than the focal plane resolution. We propose and experimentally demonstrate an axial super-resolution evanescent wave tomography method that enables the use of regular evanescent wave microscopes like the total internal reflection fluorescence microscope beyond surface imaging and achieve a tomographic reconstruction with axial super-resolution. Our proposed method based on Fourier reconstruction achieves axial super-resolution by extracting information from multiple sets of 3D fluorescence images when the sample is illuminated by an evanescent wave. We propose a procedure to extract super-resolution features from the incremental penetration of an evanescent wave and support our theory by one-dimensional (along the optical axis) and 3D simulations. We validate our claims by experimentally demonstrating tomographic reconstruction of microtubules in HeLa cells with an axial resolution of ∼130 nm∼130 nm. Our method does not require any additional optical components or sample preparation. The proposed method can be combined with focal plane super-resolution techniques like stochastic optical reconstruction microscopy and can also be adapted for THz and microwave near-field tomography.


See also: Extreme-Materials
Saman Jahani and Zubin Jacob. 1/7/2016.

All-dielectric metamaterials

. Nature Nanotechnology, 11, Pp. 23-26.

The ideal material for nanophotonic applications will have a large refractive index at optical frequencies, respond to both the electric and magnetic fields of light, support large optical chirality and anisotropy, confine and guide light at the nanoscale, and be able to modify the phase and amplitude of incoming radiation in a fraction of a wavelength. Artificial electromagnetic media, or metamaterials, based on metallic or polar dielectric nanostructures can provide many of these properties by coupling light to free electrons (plasmons) or phonons (phonon polaritons), respectively, but at the inevitable cost of significant energy dissipation and reduced device efficiency. Recently, however, there has been a shift in the approach to nanophotonics. Low-loss electromagnetic responses covering all four quadrants of possible permittivities and permeabilities have been achieved using completely transparent and high-refractive-index dielectric building blocks. Moreover, an emerging class of all-dielectric metamaterials consisting of anisotropic crystals has been shown to support large refractive index contrast between orthogonal polarizations of light. These advances have revived the exciting prospect of integrating exotic electromagnetic effects in practical photonic devices, to achieve, for example, ultrathin and efficient optical elements, and realize the long-standing goal of subdiffraction confinement and guiding of light without metals. In this Review, we present a broad outline of the whole range of electromagnetic effects observed using all-dielectric metamaterials: high-refractive-index nanoresonators, metasurfaces, zero-index metamaterials and anisotropic metamaterials. Finally, we discuss current challenges and future goals for the field at the intersection with quantum, thermal and silicon photonics, as well as biomimetic metasurfaces.

P.N. Dyachenko, S. Molesky, A., M. Sto¨rmer, T. Krekeler, S. Lang, M. Ritter, Z. Jacob, and M. Eich. 6/6/2016.

Controlling thermal emission with refractory epsilon-near-zero metamaterials via topological transitions

. Nature Communications, 7.

Control of thermal radiation at high temperatures is vital for waste heat recovery and for high-efficiency thermophotovoltaic (TPV) conversion. Previously, structural resonances utilizing gratings, thin film resonances, metasurfaces and photonic crystals were used to spectrally control thermal emission, often requiring lithographic structuring of the surface and causing significant angle dependence. In contrast, here, we demonstrate a refractory W-HfO2 metamaterial, which controls thermal emission through an engineered dielectric response function. The epsilon-near-zero frequency of a metamaterial and the connected optical topological transition (OTT) are adjusted to selectively enhance and suppress the thermal emission in the near-infrared spectrum, crucial for improved TPV efficiency. The near-omnidirectional and spectrally selective emitter is obtained as the emission changes due to material properties and not due to resonances or interference effects, marking a paradigm shift in thermal engineering approaches. We experimentally demonstrate the OTT in a thermally stable metamaterial at high temperatures of 1,000 °C.

Sarang Pendharker, Huan Hu, Sean Molesky, Ryan Starko-Bowes, Zohreh Poursoti, Sandipan Pramanik, Neda Nazemifard, Robert Fedosejevs, Thomas Thundat, and Zubin Jacob. 3/31/2017.

Thermal graphene metamaterials and epsilon-near-zero high temperature plasmonics

. Journal of Optics, 19, 5.

The key feature of a thermophotovoltaic (TPV) emitter is the enhancement of thermal emission corresponding to energies just above the bandgap of the absorbing photovoltaic cell and simultaneous suppression of thermal emission below the bandgap. We show here that a single layer plasmonic coating can perform this task with high efficiency. Our key design principle involves tuning the epsilon-near-zero frequency (plasma frequency) of the metal acting as a thermal emitter to the electronic bandgap of the semiconducting cell. This approach utilizes the change in the reflectivity of a metal near its plasma frequency (epsilon-near-zero frequency) to lead to spectrally selective thermal emission, and can be adapted to large area coatings using high temperature plasmonic materials. We provide a detailed analysis of the spectral and angular performance of high temperature plasmonic coatings as TPV emitters. We show the potential of such high temperature plasmonic thermal emitter coatings (p-TECs) for narrowband near-field thermal emission. We also show the enhancement of near-surface energy density in graphene-multilayer thermal metamaterials due to a topological transition at an effective epsilon-near-zero frequency. This opens up spectrally selective thermal emission from graphene multilayers in the infrared frequency regime. Our design paves the way for the development of single layer p-TECs and graphene multilayers for spectrally selective radiative heat transfer applications.

Sarang Pendharker, Swapnali S. Shende, Zubin Jacob, and Neda Nazemifard. 6/28/2017.

Three-dimensional optical tomography of bitumen and clay association in oil sands tailings

. Fuel, 207, Pp. 262-267.

Alberta has one of the largest oil reserves in the world. Large-scale commercial oil production from oil sands in Alberta for the past 40 years has led to accumulation of tailings water in tailings ponds covering areas ranging over 150 km2. Less than 1% of this area has been certified as reclaimed leading to both economic and environmental consequences. Research is underway to reduce tailings ponds reclamation time from decades to weeks by developing new polymer flocculants, better tailings treatment methods and recovering bitumen from tailings. Information about impact of residual bitumen on the shear strength, trafficability, densificationhydraulic conductivity, consolidation, post-reclamation settlement for oil sands tailings is insufficient. Outstanding challenges exist in understanding bitumen and clay interaction in tailings to help with the development of techniques which accelerate clay sedimentation and enhance bitumen recovery. To shed light on the bitumen-clay interactions, here we develop advanced three-dimensional optical tomography approaches approaching sub-micron resolution. In this paper, we report, the first ever Total Internal Reflection Fluorescence (TIRF) microscope tomography for Mature Fine Tailings (MFT) samples to reveal bitumen distribution on clay in MFT. We employ a unique evanescent wave illumination approach as opposed to conventional fluorescence microscopy with enhanced axial resolution and high signal-to-noise ratio. The resolution of TIRF is further improved by using an Axial Super-Resolution Evanescent-wave Tomography (AxSET) technique. The information obtained from this study not only gives evidence of the presence of hydrophilic and oleophilic clays but with aid of 3D reconstruction using advance image processing also validates that bitumen is partially coating some of clay surfaces, thus verifying the presence of biwettable clays in oil sands MFT. The advances from our imaging work can aid the development of bitumen recovery techniques for environmental and economic impact.

See also: Extreme-Materials
Jijie Huang, Xuejing Wang, Nicki L. Hogan, Shengxiang Wu, Ping Lu, Zhe Fan, Yaomin Dai, Beibei Zeng, Ryan Starko-Bowes, Jie Jian, Han Wang, Leigang Li, Rohit P. Prasankumar, Dmitry Yarotski, Matthew Sheldon, Hou-Tong Chen, Zubin Jacob, Xinghang Zhang, and Haiyan Wang. 4/27/2018.

Nanoscale Artificial Plasmonic Lattice in Self-Assembled Vertically Aligned Nitride–Metal Hybrid Metamaterials

. Advanced Science.

Nanoscale metamaterials exhibit extraordinary optical properties and are proposed for various technological applications. Here, a new class of novel nanoscale two-phase hybrid metamaterials is achieved by combining two major classes of traditional plasmonic materials, metals (e.g., Au) and transition metal nitrides (e.g., TaN, TiN, and ZrN) in an epitaxial thin film form via the vertically aligned nanocomposite platform. By properly controlling the nucleation of the two phases, the nanoscale artificial plasmonic lattices (APLs) consisting of highly ordered hexagonal close packed Au nanopillars in a TaN matrix are demonstrated. More specifically, uniform Au nanopillars with an average diameter of 3 nm are embedded in epitaxial TaN platform and thus form highly 3D ordered APL nanoscale metamaterials. Novel optical properties include highly anisotropic reflectance, obvious nonlinear optical properties indicating inversion symmetry breaking of the hybrid material, large permittivity tuning and negative permittivity response over a broad wavelength regime, and superior mechanical strength and ductility. The study demonstrates the novelty of the new hybrid plasmonic scheme with great potentials in versatile material selection, and, tunable APL spacing and pillar dimension, all important steps toward future designable hybrid plasmonic materials.

Saman Jahani, Sangsik Kim, Jonathan Atkinson, Justin C. Wirth, Farid Kalhor, Abdullah Al Noman, Ward D. Newman, Prashant Shekhar, Kyunghun Han, Vien Van, Raymond G. DeCorby, Lukas Chrostowski, Minghao Qi, and Zubin Jacob. 5/14/2018.

Controlling evanescent waves using silicon photonic all-dielectric metamaterials for dense integration

. Nature Communications, 9.

Ultra-compact, densely integrated optical components manufactured on a CMOS-foundry platform are highly desirable for optical information processing and electronic-photonic co-integration. However, the large spatial extent of evanescent waves arising from nanoscale confinement, ubiquitous in silicon photonic devices, causes significant cross-talk and scattering loss. Here, we demonstrate that anisotropic all-dielectric metamaterials open a new degree of freedom in total internal reflection to shorten the decay length of evanescent waves. We experimentally show the reduction of cross-talk by greater than 30 times and the bending loss by greater than 3 times in densely integrated, ultra-compact photonic circuit blocks. Our prototype all-dielectric metamaterial-waveguide achieves a low propagation loss of approximately 3.7±1.0 dB/cm, comparable to those of silicon strip waveguides. Our approach marks a departure from interference-based confinement as in photonic crystals or slot waveguides, which utilize nanoscale field enhancement. Its ability to suppress evanescent waves without substantially increasing the propagation loss shall pave the way for all-dielectric metamaterial-based dense integration.

RyanStarko -Bowes, Jin Dai, Ward D. Newman, Sean Molesky, Limei Qi, Aman Satija, Ying Tsui, Manisha Gupta, Robert Fedosejevs, Sandipan Pramanik, Yi Xuan, and Zubin Jacob. 5/11/2018.

Dual-band quasi-coherent radiative thermal source

. Journal of Quantitative Spectroscopy & Radiative Transfer, 216, Pp. 99-104.

Thermal radiation from an unpatterned object is similar to that of a gray body. The thermal emission is insensitive to polarization, shows only Lambertian angular dependence, and is well modeled as the product of the blackbody distribution and a scalar emissivity over large frequency bands. Here, we design, fabricate and experimentally characterize the spectral, polarization, angular and temperature dependence of a microstructured SiC dual band thermal infrared source; achieving independent control of the frequency and polarization of thermal radiation in two spectral bands. The measured emission of the device in the Reststrahlen band (10.3–12.7 µm) selectively approaches that of a blackbody, peaking at an emissivity of 0.85 at λx=11.75μm and 0.81 at λy=12.25μm. This effect arises due to the thermally excited phonon polaritons in silicon carbide. The control of thermal emission properties exhibited by the design is well suited for applications requiring infrared sources, gas or temperature sensors and nanoscale heat transfer. Our work paves the way for future silicon carbide based thermal metasurfaces.

Saman Jahani, Hangqi Zhao, and Zubin Jacob. 7/12/2018.

Switching Purcell effect with nonlinear epsilon-near-zero media

. Applied Physics Letters, 113.

An optical topological transition is defined as the change in the photonic iso-frequency surface around epsilon-near-zero (ENZ) frequencies which can considerably change the spontaneous emission of a quantum emitter placed near a metamaterial slab. Here, we show that due to the strong Kerr nonlinearity at ENZ frequencies, a high-power pulse can induce a sudden transition in the topology of the iso-frequency dispersion curve, leading to a significant change in the transmission of propagating as well as evanescent waves through the metamaterial slab. This evanescent wave switch effect allows for the control of spontaneous emission through modulation of the Purcell effect. We develop a theory of the enhanced nonlinear response of ENZ media to s and p polarized inputs and show that this nonlinear effect is stronger for p polarization and is almost independent of the incident angle. We perform finite-difference time-domain simulations to demonstrate the transient response of the metamaterial slab to an ultrafast pulse and fast switching of the Purcell effect at the sub-picosecond scale. The Purcell factor changes at ENZ by almost a factor of three which is an order of magnitude stronger than that away from ENZ. We also show that due to the inhomogeneous spatial field distribution inside the multilayer metal-dielectric super-lattice, a unique spatial topological transition metamaterial can be achieved by the control pulse induced nonlinearity. Our work can lead to ultra-fast control of quantum phenomena in ENZ metamaterials.

Ward D. Newman, Cristian L. Cortes, Amir Afshar, Ken Cadien, Al Meldrum, Robert Fedosejevs, and Zubin Jacob. 10/5/2018. Observation of long-range dipole-dipole interactions in hyperbolic metamaterials. Science Advances, 4, 10.

Dipole-dipole interactions (Vdd) between closely spaced atoms and molecules are related to real photon and virtual photon exchange between them and decrease in the near field connected with the characteristic Coulombic dipole field law. The control and modification of this marked scaling with distance have become a long-standing theme in quantum engineering since dipole-dipole interactions govern Van der Waals forces, collective Lamb shifts, atom blockade effects, and Förster resonance energy transfer. We show that metamaterials can fundamentally modify these interactions despite large physical separation between interacting quantum emitters. We demonstrate a two orders of magnitude increase in the near-field resonant dipole-dipole interactions at intermediate field distances (10 times the near field) and observe the distance scaling law consistent with a super-Coulombic interaction theory curtailed only by absorption and finite size effects of the metamaterial constituents. We develop a first-principles numerical approach of many-body dipole-dipole interactions in metamaterials to confirm our theoretical predictions and experimental observations. In marked distinction to existing approaches of engineering radiative interactions, our work paves the way for controlling long-range dipole-dipole interactions using hyperbolic metamaterials and natural hyperbolic two-dimensional materials.

Prashant Shekhar, Sarang Pendharker, Harshad Sahasrabudhe, Douglas Vick, Marek Malac, Rajib Rahman, and Zubin Jacob. 12/7/2018.

Extreme ultraviolet plasmonics and Cherenkov radiation in silicon

. Optica, 5, 12, Pp. 1590-1596.

Silicon is widely used as the material of choice for semiconductor and insulator applications in nanoelectronics, micro-electro-mechanical systems, solar cells, and on-chip photonics. In stark contrast, in this paper, we explore silicon’s metallic properties and show that it can support propagating surface plasmons, collective charge oscillations, in the extreme ultraviolet (EUV) energy regime not possible with other plasmonic materials such as aluminum, silver, or gold. This is fundamentally different from conventional approaches, where doping semiconductors is considered necessary to observe plasmonic behavior. We experimentally map the photonic band structure of EUV surface and bulk plasmons in silicon using momentum-resolved electron energy loss spectroscopy. Our experimental observations are validated by macroscopic electrodynamic electron energy loss theory simulations as well as quantum density functional theory calculations. As an example of exploiting these EUV plasmons for applications, we propose a tunable and broadband thresholdless Cherenkov radiation source in the EUV using silicon plasmonic metamaterials. Our work can pave the way for the field of EUV plasmonics.

Sean Molesky and Zubin Jacob. 3/18/2019.

Definition of polaritonic fluctuations in natural hyperbolic media

. Physical Review A, 99, 3.

The discovery of photonic hyperbolic dispersion surfaces in certain van der Waals bonded solids, such as hexagonal boron nitride and bismuth selenide (a topological insulator), offers intriguing possibilities for creating strongly modified light-matter interactions. However, open problems exist in quantifying electromagnetic field fluctuations in these media, complicating typical approaches for modeling photonic characteristics. Here, we address this issue by linking the identifying traits of hyperbolic response to a coupling between longitudinal and transverse fields that cannot occur in isotropic media. This description allows us to formulate a gauge theoretic description of the influence of hyperbolic response on electromagnetic fluctuations without explicitly imposing a characteristic size (model of nonlocality)—leading to formally bounded expressions so long as material absorption is included. We then apply this framework to two exemplary areas: the optical sum rule for modified spontaneous emission enhancement in a general uniaxial medium and thermal electromagnetic field fluctuations in hexagonal boron nitride and bismuth selenide. We find that while the sum rule is satisfied, it does not constrain the enhancement of light-matter interactions in either case. We also show that both hexagonal boron nitride and bismuth selenide possess broad spectral regions where the magnitude of electromagnetic field fluctuations are over 120 times larger, and over 800 times larger along specific angular directions, than they are in vacuum.

Prashant Shekhar, Sarang Pendharker, Douglas Vick, Marek Malac, and Zubin Jacob. 3/4/2019.

Fast electrons interacting with a natural hyperbolic medium: bismuth telluride

. Optics Express, 27, 5, Pp. 6970-6975.

Fast electrons interacting with matter have been instrumental for probing bulk and surface photonic excitations including Cherenkov radiation and plasmons. Additionally, fast electrons are ideal to investigate unique bulk and longitudinal photonic modes in hyperbolic materials at large wavevectors difficult to probe optically. Here, we use momentum-resolved electron energy loss spectroscopy (k-EELS) to perform the first experimental demonstration of high-k modes and hyperbolic Cherenkov radiation in the natural hyperbolic material Bi2Te3. This work establishes Bi2Te3 as one of the few viable natural hyperbolic materials in the visible and paves the way for k-EELS as a fundamental tool to probe hyperbolic media.

Ryan Starko-Bowes, Xueji Wang, Zhujing Xu, Sandipan Pramanik, Na Lu, Tongcang Li, and Zubin Jacob. 10/3/2019.

High-Temperature Polaritons in Ceramic Nanotube Antennas

. Nano letters, 19, 12, Pp. 8565-8571.

High-temperature thermal photonics presents unique challenges for engineers as the database of materials that can withstand extreme environments are limited. In particular, ceramics with high temperature stability that can support coupled light-matter excitations, that is, polaritons, open new avenues for engineering radiative heat transfer. Hexagonal boron nitride (hBN) is an emerging ceramic 2D material that possesses low-loss polaritons in two spectrally distinct mid-infrared frequency bands. The hyperbolic nature of these frequency bands leads to a large local density of states (LDOS). In 2D form, these polaritonic states are dark modes, bound to the material. In cylindrical form, boron nitride nanotubes (BNNTs) create subwavelength particles capable of coupling these dark modes to radiative ones. In this study, we leverage the high-frequency optical phonons present in BNNTs to create strong mid-IR thermal antenna emitters at high temperatures (938 K). Through direct measurement of thermal emission of a disordered system of BNNTs, we confirm their radiative polaritonic modes and show that the antenna behavior can be observed even in a disordered system. These are among the highest-frequency optical phonon polaritons that exist and could be used as high-temperature mid-IR thermal nanoantenna sources.

Chinmay Khandekar and Zubin Jacob. 10/15/2019.

Thermal spin photonics in the near-field of nonreciprocal media

. New Journal of Physics, 21.

The interplay of spin angular momentum and thermal radiation is a frontier area of interest to nanophotonics as well as topological physics. Here, we show that a thick planar slab of a nonreciprocal material, despite being at thermal equilibrium with its environment, can exhibit nonzero photon spin angular momentum and nonzero radiative heat flux in its vicinity. We identify them as the persistent thermal photon spin and the persistent planar heat current respectively. With a practical example system, we reveal that the fundamental origin of these phenomena is connected to the spin-momentum locking of thermally excited evanescent waves. We also discover spin magnetic moment of surface polaritons that further clarifies these features. We then propose an imaging experiment based on Brownian motion that allows one to witness these surprising features by directly looking at them using a lab microscope. We further demonstrate the universal behavior of these near-field thermal radiation phenomena through a comprehensive analysis of gyroelectric, gyromagnetic and magneto-electric nonreciprocal materials. Together, these results expose a surprisingly little explored research area of thermal spin photonics with prospects for new avenues related to non-Hermitian topological photonics and radiative heat transport.

Ashwin K. Boddeti, Abubakr Alabassi, Vaneet Aggarwal, and Zubin Jacob. 11/26/2019.

Spectral domain inverse design for accelerating nanocomposite metamaterials discovery

. Optical Materials Express, 9, 12, Pp. 4765-4771.

Inverse design techniques in the context of nanophotonics have helped in discovery of compact and counter-intuitive structures/shapes. We introduce the concept of spectral domain inverse design to search through the optical trade-space (dispersive permittivity) of nanocomposite metamaterials. We develop a hybrid optimization technique that combines genetic algorithms and gradient descent methods. We utilize this technique to inverse design an ultra-thin thermophotovoltaic emitter coating material. Our work can lead to an efficient approach to search for new multi-functional optical/thermal metamaterials with desired complex permittivity.

Harish N. S. Krishnamoorthy, Zubin Jacob, Evgenii Narimanov, Ilona Kretzschmar, and Vinod M. Menon. 4/13/2012. Topological Transitions in Metamaterials. Science, 336, 6078, Pp. 205-209.

Light-matter interactions can be controlled by manipulating the photonic environment. We uncovered an optical topological transition in strongly anisotropic metamaterials that results in a dramatic increase in the photon density of states—an effect that can be used to engineer this interaction. We describe a transition in the topology of the iso-frequency surface from a closed ellipsoid to an open hyperboloid by use of artificially nanostructured metamaterials. We show that this topological transition manifests itself in increased rates of spontaneous emission of emitters positioned near the metamaterial. Altering the topology of the iso-frequency surface by using metamaterials provides a fundamentally new route to manipulating light-matter interactions.

C. L. Cortes, W. Newman, S. Molesky, and Zubin Jacob. 5/23/2012.

Quantum nanophotonics using hyperbolic metamaterials

. Journal of Optics, 14, 6.

Engineering optical properties using artificial nanostructured media known as metamaterials has led to breakthrough devices with capabilities from super-resolution imaging to invisibility. In this paper, we review metamaterials for quantum nanophotonic applications, a recent development in the field. This seeks to address many challenges in the field of quantum optics using advances in nanophotonics and nanofabrication. We focus on the class of nanostructured media with hyperbolic dispersion that have emerged as one of the most promising metamaterials with a multitude of practical applications from subwavelength imaging, nanoscale waveguiding, biosensing to nonlinear switching. We present the various design and characterization principles of hyperbolic metamaterials and explain the most important property of such media: a broadband enhancement in the electromagnetic density of states. We review several recent experiments that have explored this phenomenon using spontaneous emission from dye molecules and quantum dots. We finally point to future applications of hyperbolic metamaterials, using the broadband enhancement in the spontaneous emission to construct single-photon sources.

See also: Extreme-Materials