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Microfluid-based soft metasurface for tunable optical activity in THz wave

Sep 3, 2021

Zhang, Wu, Bingzhi Zhang, Xiaohui Fang, Kejun Cheng, Weiqian Chen, Zihuang Wang, Dou Hong, and Meng Zhang. “Microfluid-based soft metasurface for tunable optical activity in THz wave.” Optics Express 29, no. 6 (2021): 8786-8795.


Metasurfaces are usually planar structures and do not possess intrinsic chirality and therefore hardly generate optical activity. Here we realized a tunable optical activity in a terahertz wave through a microfluid-based soft metasurface. The meta-atom is a chiral structured microchannel made of soft polydimethylsiloxane and injected with the liquid metal Galinstan. A microfluid pressure system is bonded to the metasurface to reconfigure all meta-atoms simultaneously. By pumping glycerol liquid into the pressure system, the metasurface is deformed from a planar structure to a three dimensional one, which manifests intrinsic chirality for optical activity realization. By controlling the injected glycerol volume, a polarization rotation from 0°to 14° at 0.19 THz is demonstrated. The soft metasurface with tunable optical activity can be flexibly applied in various applications such as polarization microscopy, bio-detection and material analysis, etc.

Full paper can be viewed here.