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Proceedings Paper

Active coloration with flexible high contrast metastructures
Author(s): Li Zhu; Jonas Kapraun; James Ferrara; Connie J. Chang-Hasnain
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Paper Abstract

The ability to actively control the perceived color of objects is highly desirable for a variety of applications, such as camouflage, sensing, and displays. Such a phenomenon can be readily found in nature - the chameleon is an excellent example. However, the capability to change color at-will has yet to be reproduced by humans. Ultra-thin dielectric high contrast metastructures (HCMs) have been shown to exhibit unique versatility to manipulate light. In this work, we report a completely new flexible HCM structure whose color can be varied by stretching the membrane. This is accomplished with a novel HCM design that annihilates the 0th order diffraction in a grating while enhancing the -1st order. The color perception of the HCM, determined by the -1st diffraction order, is thus easily changed with the variation of its period. The ultra-thin HCM is patterned on a silicon-on-insulator wafer and transferred onto a flexible membrane. We measure more than 15 times stronger intensity in the -1st order diffraction than the 0th order, in excellent agreement with theoretical results. We experimentally demonstrate brilliant colors and change the color of a 1 cm×1 cm sample from green to orange (39 nm wavelength change) with a stretch of 4.9% (25 nm period change). The same effect can be used for steering a laser beam. We demonstrate more than 40 resolvable beam spots.

Paper Details

Date Published: 27 February 2015
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9372, High Contrast Metastructures IV, 93720K (27 February 2015); doi: 10.1117/12.2079759
Show Author Affiliations
Li Zhu, Univ. of California, Berkeley (United States)
Jonas Kapraun, Julius-Maximilians-Univ. Würzburg (Germany)
James Ferrara, Univ. of California, Berkeley (United States)
Connie J. Chang-Hasnain, Univ. of California, Berkeley (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9372:
High Contrast Metastructures IV
Connie J. Chang-Hasnain; David Fattal; Fumio Koyama; Weimin Zhou, Editor(s)

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