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UBC Theses and Dissertations

Engineering optical properties using layered metamaterials Al Shakhs, Mohammed Hashim


This thesis explores the concept of metamaterials; a fairly recent concept in the literature which has attracted the attention of researchers due to their abnormal electromagnetic properties. We will particularly consider one dimensional version of a metamaterial made of layers. At the first glance, layered metamaterials are simply multi-layer thin films. The distinguishing feature of layered metamaterials is that they usually incorporate metals whereas most thin film structures in the past have only incorporated dielectrics. The immense interest in certain layered configurations of metals and dielectrics, particularly when the thicknesses are really thin compared to the wavelength, is due to their exhibition of seemingly counter-intuitive or impossible properties such as refraction to the same side of normal (negative refraction), evanescent wave amplification, or light focusing with a flat interface (flat lensing). The simple configuration of layered metamaterials and their interesting properties are the prime motivations of this work. In this thesis, we first start with a very generic electromagnetic description of the optical properties of layered structures. This general description appears to be novel due to presenting theory in new form. We use this understanding to explain how and why certain layered structures can exhibit negative refraction or flat lensing. This investigation has also led to several new predictions of new optical properties of layered metamaterial structures. We conclude this work by various experimental studies which validate the predictions of the work and also explore fabrication challenges in the making of layered metamaterials.

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