Effective medium theory for anisotropic media with plasmonic core-shell nanoparticle inclusions

  • V. Yu. Reshetnyak
  • I. P. Pinkevych
  • T. J. Sluckin
  • A. M. Urbas
  • D. R. Evans
Open Access
Regular Article


Core-shell building blocks have been found useful in recent years as inclusions, in the search for metamaterials with tailored properties. Either the core or the shell of these composite inclusions may be metallic, and the dielectric component may be both radially anisotropic and radially inhomogeneous. In tunable anisotropic metamaterials, the tuning may then be achieved through the host, the core, or some combination thereof. However a theoretical picture is harder to build. Here we propose an approach to an effective medium theory for such materials, valid in the quasi-static limit. The method proceeds first by homogenising the interior of complex particle, and then uses standard anisotropic effective medium methods to provide bulk effective homogenized parameters. By varying the degree of inhomogeneity in the core, shell and dielectric-metal material volume fractions, the technique can be used as a tool for the design of metamaterials with specifically engineered properties. We find that metamaterial properties can be readily tuned by reorienting the optical axis of the host (e.g., liquid crystal). In particular, there is a possibility of switching between hyperbolic and conventional anisotropic metamaterial properties by changing inclusion shell properties.


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© The Author(s) 2018

Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License (, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Physics FacultyNational Taras Shevchenko University of KyivKyivUkraine
  2. 2.School of Mathematical SciencesUniversity of SouthamptonSouthamptonUK
  3. 3.Air Force Research Laboratory, Materials and Manufacturing DirectorateWright-Patterson Air Force BaseDaytonUSA

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