A model based on geometrical optics has been developed to describe the photometric observations associated with a novel method to control the reflectance of a surface. In this new reflectance modulation approach, electrophoresis of pigment particles is used to absorb light reflected by total internal reflection (TIR). The pigment particles are sufficiently small that they substantially do not scatter light, but rather they modify the effective refractive index at the reflection interface. An incident light ray interacting with this modified effective index is attenuated in a spectrally selective manner. Although frustrated TIR has been understood and used in various applications for some time, in this case it is used to substantially modify the color of the reflected light, which to our knowledge has not been previously reported. A numerical model of the pigment particle distribution has been developed to describe the observations.
© 2005 Optical Society of America
Original Manuscript: May 14, 2004
Revised Manuscript: October 4, 2004
Manuscript Accepted: November 4, 2004
Published: March 20, 2005
Michele A. Mossman and Lorne A. Whitehead, "Controlled frustration of total internal reflection by electrophoresis of pigment particles," Appl. Opt. 44, 1601-1609 (2005)