Navigation Links
Forget about leprechauns, engineers are catching rainbows
Date:2/15/2013

BUFFALO, N.Y. University at Buffalo engineers have created a more efficient way to catch rainbows, an advancement in photonics that could lead to technological breakthroughs in solar energy, stealth technology and other areas of research.

Qiaoqiang Gan, PhD, an assistant professor of electrical engineering at UB, and a team of graduate students described their work in a paper called "Rainbow Trapping in Hyperbolic Metamaterial Waveguide," published Feb. 13 in the online journal Scientific Reports.

They developed a "hyperbolic metamaterial waveguide," which is essentially an advanced microchip made of alternate ultra-thin films of metal and semiconductors and/or insulators. The waveguide halts and ultimately absorbs each frequency of light, at slightly different places in a vertical direction (see image at http://www.buffalo.edu/news/releases/2013/02/016.html), to catch a "rainbow" of wavelengths.

Gan is a researcher within UB's new Center of Excellence in Materials Informatics.

"Electromagnetic absorbers have been studied for many years, especially for military radar systems," Gan said. "Right now, researchers are developing compact light absorbers based on optically thick semiconductors or carbon nanotubes. However, it is still challenging to realize the perfect absorber in ultra-thin films with tunable absorption band.

"We are developing ultra-thin films that will slow the light and therefore allow much more efficient absorption, which will address the long existing challenge."

Light is made of photons that, because they move extremely fast (i.e., at the speed of light), are difficult to tame. In their initial attempts to slow light, researchers relied upon cryogenic gases. But because cryogenic gases are very cold roughly 240 degrees below zero Fahrenheit they are difficult to work with outside a laboratory.

Before joining UB, Gan helped pioneer a way to slow light without cryogenic gases. He and other researchers at Lehigh University made nano-scale-sized grooves in metallic surfaces at different depths, a process that altered the optical properties of the metal. While the grooves worked, they had limitations.

For example, the energy of the incident light cannot be transferred onto the metal surface efficiently, which hampered its use for practical applications, Gan said.

The hyperbolic metamaterial waveguide solves that problem because it is a large area of patterned film that can collect the incident light efficiently. It is referred to as an artificial medium with subwavelength features whose frequency surface is hyperboloid, which allows it to capture a wide range of wavelengths in different frequencies including visible, near-infrared, mid-infrared, terahertz and microwaves.

It could lead to advancements in an array of fields.

For example, in electronics there is a phenomenon known as crosstalk, in which a signal transmitted on one circuit or channel creates an undesired effect in another circuit or channel. The on-chip absorber could potentially prevent this.

The on-chip absorber may also be applied to solar panels and other energy-harvesting devices. It could be especially useful in mid-infrared spectral regions as thermal absorber for devices that recycle heat after sundown, Gan said.

Technology such as the Stealth bomber involves materials that make planes, ships and other devices invisible to radar, infrared, sonar and other detection methods. Because the on-chip absorber has the potential to absorb different wavelengths at a multitude of frequencies, it could be useful as a stealth coating material.


'/>"/>

Contact: Cory Nealon
cmnealon@buffalo.edu
716-645-4614
University at Buffalo
Source:Eurekalert  

Related biology technology :

1. A gut feeling about neural stem cells
2. Genuine Bio-Fuel Clears the Air About Biodiesel In Wake of Recent Turmoil
3. Unknown Facts About Chronic Low Back Pain Treatment Revealed by the Experts
4. U.S. Potato Industry Hears About Consumer Trends and Growth Opportunities at POTATO EXPO 2013
5. The Leading Edge Of Medical Innovation: New Prenatal Genetic Tests Use Moms Blood To Learn About Her Baby
6. Career Confidential Announces Release of New E-book About Using Recruiters
7. UCSB researchers demonstrate that 15=3x5 about half of the time
8. Laboratory Decision Makers Cautiously Optimistic about Funding Conditions, Finds Frost & Sullivan
9. "Just Label It" condemns dangerous riders snuck into the Farm Bill by chemical companies working to keep Americans in the dark about their food
10. July is not just about BBQ's; the Arthritis National Research Foundation honors Juvenile Arthritis Awareness Month
11. Physicians Answer Questions About Food Biotechnology in IFIC Foundation Videos
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Forget about leprechauns, engineers are catching rainbows
(Date:2/9/2016)... 9, 2016 BERG, a biopharmaceutical company ... approach, has announced the appointment of Jason ... Operating Officer. Haddock brings to BERG over 20 ... years in senior financial functions at pharmaceutical companies, ... organizational management. Niven R. Narain ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - BIOREM Inc. (TSXV: ... the top ten finalists for clean technology companies in the ... the top 10 companies listed on the TSX Venture Exchange, ... & gas, clean technology & life sciences, diversified ... equal weighting given to return on investment, market cap growth, ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016  CytRx Corporation (NASDAQ: ... company specializing in oncology, today announced that it ... agreement with Hercules Technology Growth Capital, Inc. and ... million in financing. --> ... $25 million of financing under the loan and ...
(Date:2/8/2016)... , Feb. 8, 2016 Novan, Inc. today announced that ... the Board of Directors of Novan. In addition, Robert Keegan ... North Carolina . --> ... announced that it received a total of $32.8 million of net ... its private investor network originating throughout the Research Triangle area of ...
Breaking Biology Technology:
(Date:1/25/2016)...   Unisys Corporation (NYSE: UIS ) today announced ... International Airport, New York City , to help ... to enter the United States using passports ... pilot testing of the system at Dulles last year. The ... during January 2016. --> pilot testing of the ...
(Date:1/21/2016)... , January 21, 2016 ... to a new market research report "Emotion Detection and ... Others), Software Tools (Facial Expression, Voice Recognition and ... - Global forecast to 2020", published by MarketsandMarkets, ... expected to reach USD 22.65 Billion by 2020, ...
(Date:1/18/2016)... Calif. , Jan. 18, 2016  Extenua ... software that simplifies the use and access of ... and go-to-market partnership with American Cyber.  ... brings extensive experience leading transformational C4ISR and Cyber ... and integrating the latest proven technology solutions," said ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):