, Volume 88, Issue 4, pp 605-609
Date: 12 Jun 2007

Mid-infrared metamaterial based on perforated SiC membrane: engineering optical response using surface phonon polaritons

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We theoretically and experimentally study electromagnetic properties of a novel mid-infrared metamaterial: optically thin silicon carbide (SiC) membrane perforated by an array of sub-wavelength holes. Giant absorption and transmission is found using Fourier transformed infrared (FTIR) microscopy and explained by introducing a frequency-dependent effective permittivity εeff(ω) of the perforated film. The value of εeff(ω) is determined by the excitation of two distinct types of hole resonances: delocalized slow surface polaritons (SSPs) whose frequencies are largely determined by the array period, and a localized surface polariton (LSP) corresponding to the resonance of an isolated hole. Only SSPs are shown to modify εeff(ω) strongly enough to cause giant transmission and absorption. Because of the sub-wavelength period of the hole array, anomalous optical properties can be directly traced to surface polaritons, and their interpretation is not obscured by diffractive effects. Giant absorbance of this metamaterial can be utilized in designing highly efficient thermal radiation sources.


41.20.Cv; 42.70.Qs; 71.45.Gm