Optical materials and structures articles within Nature Communications

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  • Article
    | Open Access

    Here the authors develop a subwavelength nonreciprocal optical component harnessing the effect is thermal phase transition of VO2 boosted by the Mie resonant response of the dielectric meta-surface.

    • Aditya Tripathi
    • , Chibuzor Fabian Ugwu
    •  & Sergey S. Kruk
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Transition metal perovskite oxide membranes are promising platforms for infrared polaritonics. Here, the authors experimentally demonstrate highly confined epsilon-near-zero modes and propagating surface phonon polaritons in high-quality SrTiO3 membranes with deep subwavelength thickness.

    • Ruijuan Xu
    • , Iris Crassee
    •  & Yin Liu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The authors demonstrate ultrabroadband, polarisation-independent directional control of thermal radiation using a pixelated micro-emitter, and produce large emissivity contrast at different directions, with potential applications to radiative cooling, infrared spectroscopy and thermophotovoltaics.

    • Ziwei Fan
    • , Taeseung Hwang
    •  & Zi Jing Wong
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Lee et al. developed ultrathin metallic (metal filling ratios of > 70 %) metamaterials that exhibit perfect transmission at a specific radar frequency. These characteristics enable microwave transparent, low-sheet-resistance radar heaters for safe autonomous driving in extreme weather.

    • Eun-Joo Lee
    • , Jun-Young Kim
    •  & Sun-Kyung Kim
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Researchers demonstrate that image-processing metasurfaces can be dynamically reconfigured by using phase-change materials. The work might lead to novel tunable devices for compact optical computing for applications in AR/VR and bio-medical imaging.

    • Michele Cotrufo
    • , Shaban B. Sulejman
    •  & Andrea Alù
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The researchers showcase a silicon-photonics-based analog approach for large-scale image processing that can be deployed for high-speed image compression and de-noising using an auto-encoder framework with minimal power consumption.

    • Xiao Wang
    • , Brandon Redding
    •  & Raktim Sarma
  • Article
    | Open Access

    A consistency issue with the production of porous polymer-based radiative coatings can be a significant drop in the cooling performance when dried under humid conditions. This issue is efficiently resolved by adding polymer reinforcement.

    • Dongpyo Hong
    • , Yong Joon Lee
    •  & Sang Yoon Park
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Photoluminescence from plasmonic nanostructures exhibits diverse wavelength dependent nonlinear behaviors with debated origins. Here, authors use plasmonic gap mode resonators with precise nanoscale confinement to show this nonlinear emission can become dominated by non-Fermi carrier contributions.

    • Robert Lemasters
    • , Manoj Manjare
    •  & Hayk Harutyunyan
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Polaritons – hybrid light-matter excitations – in van der Waals materials hold promise for photonics applications below the diffraction limit. Here, the authors demonstrate in-plane steering and cloaking of phonon polaritons in assembled micro-structures based on α-MoO3 films with misaligned crystallographic orientations.

    • Hanchao Teng
    • , Na Chen
    •  & Qing Dai
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Metasurface-based architectures enhance light-matter interactions between a terahertz photonic mode and glucose vibrational resonance. This platform allows new physical and chemical properties of hybrid light-matter states to be exploited.

    • Ahmed Jaber
    • , Michael Reitz
    •  & Jean-Michel Ménard
  • Article
    | Open Access

    In this work, authors synthesize transparent radiative cooling cover windows for flexible and foldable electronic devices. Besides demonstrated enhanced mechanical and moisture-impermeable properties, these mitigate temperature rise of devices under solar irradiation and improve overall thermal management.

    • Kang Won Lee
    • , Jonghun Yi
    •  & Dong Rip Kim
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Lead toxification in society is a public health crisis. The exposure to lead poisoning gives rise to a multitude of health issues. In this work, a chip-scale photonic platform that enables the highly quantitative detection of lead is demonstrated.

    • Luigi Ranno
    • , Yong Zen Tan
    •  & Jia Xu Brian Sia
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Superconducting nanowire single-photon detectors require operation at T < 4 K, and successful attempts to extend their operation at 20 K and above using high-TC BSCCO flakes come at the cost of lower scalability to large areas. Here, the authors break this trade-off by using high-quality MgB2 films and exploiting a helium-ion beam-based irradiation process.

    • Ilya Charaev
    • , Emma K. Batson
    •  & Karl K. Berggren
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The authors present nonvolatile optical phase shift induced by ferroelectric hafnium zirconium oxide deposited on a SiN waveguide. This finding paves the way for largescale programmable photonic circuits for communication, computing, and sensing.

    • Kazuma Taki
    • , Naoki Sekine
    •  & Mitsuru Takenaka
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Achieving acoustic waveguides with low loss, tailorability, and easy fabrication is a considerable challenge. Here, the authors introduce suspended anti-resonant acoustic waveguides with superior confinement and high selectivity of acoustic modes, supporting both forward and backward SBS on chip.

    • Peng Lei
    • , Mingyu Xu
    •  & Xiaopeng Xie
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Caustics, as a unique type of singularity in wave phenomena, occur in diverse physical systems. Here, the authors realize multi-dimensional customization of caustics with 3D-printed metasurfaces. This arbitrary caustic engineering is poised to bring new revolutions to many domains.

    • Xiaoyan Zhou
    • , Hongtao Wang
    •  & Cheng-Wei Qiu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Silicon-integrated graphene photodetectors exhibit promising bandwidths at telecom wavelengths, but their responsivity is usually limited. Here, the authors report the wafer-scale fabrication of waveguide-integrated detectors based on twisted bilayer graphene, showing responsivities up to 0.65 A/W and 3-dB bandwidths >65 GHz.

    • Qinci Wu
    • , Jun Qian
    •  & Hailin Peng
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Organic mechanoluminescent materials have potential in a range of applications, but it can be challenging to achieve long-lived emission. Here, the authors report isostructural doping as a strategy to achieve multicolour and high efficiency organic mechanoluminescence, applied in stress sensing.

    • Zongliang Xie
    • , Yufeng Xue
    •  & Bin Liu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Optical interference filters are multilayer structures for controlling the propagation of electromagnetic waves. Jin et al. have developed a method of via inkjet printing to fabricate optical interference filters with commercially relevant quality with remarkable A4 paper size (29.7 × 21.0 cm²) in ambient conditions.

    • Qihao Jin
    • , Qiaoshuang Zhang
    •  & Uli Lemmer
  • Article
    | Open Access

    An efficient way of realising a large number of telecom single-photon emitters for quantum communication is still missing. Here, the authors use a wide-field imaging technique for fast localization of single InAs/InP quantum dots, which are then integrated into circular Bragg grating cavities featuring high single-photon purity and indistinguishability.

    • Paweł Holewa
    • , Daniel A. Vajner
    •  & Elizaveta Semenova
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Bound states in continuum have attracted attention in various platforms, and recently condensation of bound states in continuum polariton modes was demonstrated at low temperatures. Here the authors report the observation of such a state in a periodic air-hole perovskite-based photonic crystal at room temperature.

    • Xianxin Wu
    • , Shuai Zhang
    •  & Xinfeng Liu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The researchers fuse metamaterials and origami technical to achieve ultra-wideband and large-depth reflection modulation. Flexible electronics amplify its lightweight, transparency, and cost-effectiveness, making it ideal for satellite communications.

    • Zicheng Song
    • , Juan-Feng Zhu
    •  & Cheng-Wei Qiu
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Here the authors induce asymmetric transmission in planar Fabry–Pérot microcavities by embedding organic thin films exhibiting apparent circular dichroism (ACD), an optical phenomenon based on 2D chirality.

    • Tzu-Ling Chen
    • , Andrew Salij
    •  & Randall H. Goldsmith
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Shi et al. report the synthesis of multicolour thermally activated delayed fluorescent carbon dots with 3D onion-like configuration to stabilise the triplet state and reduce the singlet-triplet energy gap. LEDs with EQE of 6.0–9.9% are achieved, a step further for efficient and stable displays.

    • Yuxin Shi
    • , Yang Zhang
    •  & Louzhen Fan
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Authors present an adaptive underwater optical communication (UWOC) technology based on multi-wavelength lasers and a full-color metasurface for converting visible-band Gaussian to circular autofocusing Airy beams. The potential of Airy beams to mitigate optical power degradation is demonstrated, enabling stable data rate transmission via 4 K video transmission for these systems.

    • Junhui Hu
    • , Zeyuan Guo
    •  & Chao Shen
  • Article
    | Open Access

    2D metallic single crystals are sought after for nanophotonic applications, but their synthesis remains challenging. Here, the authors report an atomic level precision etching method to fabricate large-area crystalline gold flakes with nanometre thickness, showing enhanced plasmonic and nonlinear optical properties.

    • Chenxinyu Pan
    • , Yuanbiao Tong
    •  & Pan Wang
  • Article
    | Open Access

    The researchers showcased a negative Goos-Hänchen effect in film samples across the entire visible spectrum and discovered an amber rainbow ribbon and an optical black hole where little light leaks out due to perfect back reflection.

    • Jing Zhao
    • , Xianfeng Wu
    •  & Xiaopeng Zhao
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Li et al. report large circular dichroism in 2D chiral perovskite single crystals, arises from the inorganic sublattice, instead of chiral ligands, driven by electron-hole exchange interactions. This is evidenced by both reflective circular dichroism spectroscopy and ab initio theory.

    • Shunran Li
    • , Xian Xu
    •  & Peijun Guo
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Enhancing the data encoding into the orbital angular momentum of light beams could enable faster and more efficient optical communications. This work demonstrates complex control of the second harmonic wavefront with dynamics solely limited by the pulse duration.

    • Artem Sinelnik
    • , Shiu Hei Lam
    •  & Isabelle Staude
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Fermi arcs show unpredictable diffraction features resulting from their long-range scattering order in aperiodic systems. Here, authors continuously twist a bi-block Weyl meta-crystal and experimentally observe the twisted Fermi arc reconstruction.

    • Hanyu Wang
    • , Wei Xu
    •  & Biao Yang
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Polarization serves as an excellent information encoding carrier. Here, authors expand the metasurface encoding dimensionality of polarization information by engineering the Poincaré Sphere trajectory with generalized Malus’ law, unveiling new opportunities for advanced polarization optics.

    • Zi-Lan Deng
    • , Meng-Xia Hu
    •  & Andrea Alù
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Biocompatible afterglow materials have potential in imaging applications, but are challenging to prepare. Here the authors report the development of carbon nanodots with near-infrared afterglow, and demonstrate their use in imaging for tumour resection.

    • Guang-Song Zheng
    • , Cheng-Long Shen
    •  & Chong-Xin Shan
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Here the authors experimentally demonstrate the anomalous and Chern topological phases in a hyperbolic non-reciprocal scattering network, establishing unidirectional channels to induce new and exciting wave transport properties in curved spaces.

    • Qiaolu Chen
    • , Zhe Zhang
    •  & Romain Fleury
  • Article
    | Open Access

    Compact sources in the frequency range of 6-12 THz are difficult to obtain due to optical phonon absorption in conventional III-V semiconductors. Here, the authors demonstrate third harmonic generation at 9.63 THz by optically pumping monolayer graphene coupled to a circular split ring resonator by using a semiconductor laser.

    • Alessandra Di Gaspare
    • , Chao Song
    •  & Miriam S. Vitiello