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Optics Express

Optics Express

  • Editor: C. Martijn de Sterke
  • Vol. 20, Iss. 20 — Sep. 24, 2012
  • pp: 22700–22711

Polarization scramblers with plasmonic meander-type metamaterials

Philipp Schau, Liwei Fu, Karsten Frenner, M. Schäferling, Heinz Schweizer, Harald Giessen, Luis Miguel Gaspar Venancio, and Wolfgang Osten  »View Author Affiliations


Optics Express, Vol. 20, Issue 20, pp. 22700-22711 (2012)
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/OE.20.022700


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Abstract

Due to plasmonic excitations, metallic meander structures exhibit an extraordinarily high transmission within a well-defined pass band. Within this frequency range, they behave like almost ideal linear polarizers, can induce large phase retardation between s- and p-polarized light and show a high polarization conversion efficiency. Due to these properties, meander structures can interact very effectively with polarized light. In this report, we suggest a novel polarization scrambler design using spatially distributed metallic meander structures with random angular orientations. The whole device has an optical response averaged over all pixel orientations within the incident beam diameter. We characterize the depolarizing properties of the suggested polarization scrambler with the Mueller matrix and investigate both single layer and stacked meander structures at different frequencies. The presented polarization scrambler can be flexibly designed to work at any wavelength in the visible range with a bandwidth of up to 100 THz. With our preliminary design, we achieve depolarization rates larger than 50% for arbitrarily polarized monochromatic and narrow-band light. Circularly polarized light could be depolarized by up to 95% at 600 THz.

© 2012 OSA

OCIS Codes
(050.2770) Diffraction and gratings : Gratings
(230.4170) Optical devices : Multilayers
(160.3918) Materials : Metamaterials
(250.5403) Optoelectronics : Plasmonics
(310.5448) Thin films : Polarization, other optical properties
(120.6085) Instrumentation, measurement, and metrology : Space instrumentation

ToC Category:
Metamaterials

History
Original Manuscript: July 4, 2012
Revised Manuscript: August 16, 2012
Manuscript Accepted: August 27, 2012
Published: September 19, 2012

Citation
Philipp Schau, Liwei Fu, Karsten Frenner, M. Schäferling, Heinz Schweizer, Harald Giessen, Luis Miguel Gaspar Venancio, and Wolfgang Osten, "Polarization scramblers with plasmonic meander-type metamaterials," Opt. Express 20, 22700-22711 (2012)
http://www.opticsinfobase.org/oe/abstract.cfm?URI=oe-20-20-22700


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