Several members of the CMIP team recently attended the 6th International Conference on Metamaterials, Crystals, and Plasmonics (META’15) conference in New York City, NY, which was held at incredibly located City College of New York in Manhattan. This conference is one of the largest gatherings of metamaterials researchers in the world, bringing together an incredibly diverse set of topics including metamaterials, plasmonics, quantum optics, nanophotonics, and two-dimensional materials, just to name a few.
The conference was headlined by the exceptional plenary speakers of each morning session. Vladimir Shalaev discussed recent progress on the development of plasmonic materials beyond noble metals that could be compatible with CMOS fabrication. Meanwhile, Federico Capasso described his group’s work on achromatic metasurfaces that enable ultraflat optics, like lenses, waveplates and polarimeters, all with high transmission efficiency. Nikolay Zheludev described exciting recent progress in all-optical switching as well as electrically tunable metasurfaces, which have recently been gaining interest from the community.
Enhanced and controlled non-linearity in metamaterials was a particularly vibrant area of research at the conference. Robert Boyd presented provocative results on the giant non-linearity of indium tin oxide near the epsilon near zero point. These results stimulated a great number of discussions at the conference. Also, Igal Brenner from Sandia National Laboratory showed exciting results on beam steering of second harmonic generation using phased arrays of all-dielectric meta-elements.
Duke’s Center for Metamaterials and Integrated Plasmonics was well-represented at this conference. Alexandre Baron, recent postdoc with David Smith and new adjunct professor of CMIP, gave an excellent presentation on the non-linearity of gold probed using propagating surface plasmons. CMIP faculty member Maiken Mikkelsen presented her group’s work on enhancing light-matter interactions such as fluorescence and non-linear generation in plasmonic patch antennas. Postdoc Gleb Akselrod, who works with Maiken Mikkelsen and David Smith, described recent results on ultrafast spontaneous emission using plasmonic nanoantennas, with a switching speed that rivals stimulated emission sources.