Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Light sculpts three-dimensional crystals in nonlinear optical materials

Scientists from the University of Muenster and the Indian Institute of Technology have experimentally demonstrated for the first time the creation of 3D photonic crystals and quasicrystals with a plethora of geometries and forms purely by the action of light in a nonlinear optical material, which allows reconfigurable as well as scalable crystal and quasicrystal formation.

Engineering and guiding light by artificial structures is one of the most actual questions in photonics, allowing optical information processing to open new horizons for waveguiding, storing, and processing light.

Three-dimensional structures have been a challenge up to now, either due to the complex formation method or the lack of appropriate material. Especially the creation complex quasi crystals that have a number of advantages features as e.g. better control of the transmission features by larger und more homogeneously distributed band gaps, is an actual challenge.

A combined effort of researchers from "Institut für Angewandte Physik" and "Center for Nonlinear Science", Westfaelische Wilhelms-Universitaet Muenster (WWU), Germany and Department of Physics, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India, shines the way for a versatile approach to form complex 3D quasi-crystallographic photonic crystals structures formed by light. The researchers have experimentally demonstrated for the first time the creation of 3D photonic crystals and quasicrystals with a plethora of geometries and forms purely by the action of light in a nonlinear optical - so-called photorefractive- material, which allows reconfigurable as well as scalable crystal and quasicrystal formation.

"Creating photonic crystals by light itself is a wonderful example on how light matter interaction can be exploited" said Prof. Dr. Cornelia Denz, Director of the Institute for Applied Physics and Leader of the Center for Nonlinear Science, WWU, who supervised the research team. "Novel three-dimensional photonic structures with reconfigurable features for photonic device integration is a hot topic among the research community. Exploiting the principle of 'light is controlling light', our complex three-dimensional photonic quasicrystals will allow forming a reconfigurable platform to investigate advanced nonlinear light-matter interactions in higher spatial dimensions" emphasized Prof. Denz.

By modifying a laser light beam by a spatial light modulator, and subsequently sculting a nonlinear optical material with this light structure, the research team could easily generate artificial refractive index photonic structures. Typically, neither any additional optical component nor manipulation of the experimental setup is involved while reconfiguring from one structure to another.

"The success of this versatile experimental innovation paves the way to the mass production of scalable large area quasi-crystallographic photonic templates. This in turn points to the realization of complex artificial photonic bandgap structures for promising applications as e.g. highly efficient flat-panel displays with customized angular emission," commented Dr. Joby Joseph, Associate Professor of Physics, Photonics Group, Indian Institute of Technology Delhi, India, who coordinated the collaborative efforts from India.

The researchers elaborate their work in the journal "Advanced Materials" (Vol.22, No.3, pp.356-360; DOI: 10.1002/adma.200901792) where Jolly Xavier as the lead author together with Martin Boguslawski, Patrick Rose, Dr. Joby Joseph, and Prof. Dr. Cornelia Denz, describe their research details. The research was partially funded by German Academic Exchange Service.

Dr. Christina Heimken | idw
Further information:

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht Novel light sources made of 2D materials
28.10.2016 | Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg

nachricht OU-led team discovers rare, newborn tri-star system using ALMA
27.10.2016 | University of Oklahoma

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Novel light sources made of 2D materials

Physicists from the University of Würzburg have designed a light source that emits photon pairs. Two-photon sources are particularly well suited for tap-proof data encryption. The experiment's key ingredients: a semiconductor crystal and some sticky tape.

So-called monolayers are at the heart of the research activities. These "super materials" (as the prestigious science magazine "Nature" puts it) have been...

Im Focus: Etching Microstructures with Lasers

Ultrafast lasers have introduced new possibilities in engraving ultrafine structures, and scientists are now also investigating how to use them to etch microstructures into thin glass. There are possible applications in analytics (lab on a chip) and especially in electronics and the consumer sector, where great interest has been shown.

This new method was born of a surprising phenomenon: irradiating glass in a particular way with an ultrafast laser has the effect of making the glass up to a...

Im Focus: Light-driven atomic rotations excite magnetic waves

Terahertz excitation of selected crystal vibrations leads to an effective magnetic field that drives coherent spin motion

Controlling functional properties by light is one of the grand goals in modern condensed matter physics and materials science. A new study now demonstrates how...

Im Focus: New 3-D wiring technique brings scalable quantum computers closer to reality

Researchers from the Institute for Quantum Computing (IQC) at the University of Waterloo led the development of a new extensible wiring technique capable of controlling superconducting quantum bits, representing a significant step towards to the realization of a scalable quantum computer.

"The quantum socket is a wiring method that uses three-dimensional wires based on spring-loaded pins to address individual qubits," said Jeremy Béjanin, a PhD...

Im Focus: Scientists develop a semiconductor nanocomposite material that moves in response to light

In a paper in Scientific Reports, a research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute describes a novel light-activated phenomenon that could become the basis for applications as diverse as microscopic robotic grippers and more efficient solar cells.

A research team at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) has developed a revolutionary, light-activated semiconductor nanocomposite material that can be used...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Event News

#IC2S2: When Social Science meets Computer Science - GESIS will host the IC2S2 conference 2017

14.10.2016 | Event News

Agricultural Trade Developments and Potentials in Central Asia and the South Caucasus

14.10.2016 | Event News

World Health Summit – Day Three: A Call to Action

12.10.2016 | Event News

Latest News

Steering a fusion plasma toward stability

28.10.2016 | Power and Electrical Engineering

Bioluminescent sensor causes brain cells to glow in the dark

28.10.2016 | Life Sciences

Activation of 2 genes linked to development of atherosclerosis

28.10.2016 | Life Sciences

More VideoLinks >>>