Metamaterials and metaoptics offer a broad dimension to explore exotic functionalities in physics and optics. In a new report now published in Science Advances, Jie Peng and a team of scientists in physics and interdisciplinary studies at the City University of Hong Kong, China, discovered how the topology of structures can dictate the properties of optical fields to offer a new dimension of exploration in optic functionalities.
The nontrivial topology of metal structures facilitated the birth of polarization singularities, and the outcomes of the study bridge singular optics, topological photonics, and non-Hermitian physis for applications across chiral sensing, quantum optics and photonics.
The concept of topology can provide new perspectives for physicists to explore unconventional properties of one-way edge states in topological insulators and their counterparts. The distribution of polarization ellipses can form topological defects known as polarization singularities, which emerge during applications such as light focusing, scattering and interference in nanostructures including meta-surfaces and photonic crystals. The geometry of optical structures can still decide the local resonance of optical modes to give rise to new optical devices including nano-antennas, metamaterials and metasurfaces.
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