Hierarchical Nanoscale Metamaterials

Project: Research project

Project Details


Metamaterials are artificially structured materials whose properties derive from structure instead
of function of their constituent units and exhibit properties not usually observed in nature, such as
negative refraction and electromagnetic cloaking for optical metamaterials and negative Poisson’s
ratios for mechanical metamaterials. However, conventional metamaterials are limited because
they are composed of the same building units (same shape and material) and with the same spacing
among neighbors. Multi-scale, multi-material nanomaterials—proposed hierarchical nanoscale
metamaterials—offer advantages over traditional metamaterials since their collective properties
can be manipulated by the interplay of short-range and long-range interactions as well as function
of the building units. This proposal aims to design materials with multiple length scales starting at
the nanoscale, and combined with modeling, realize entirely new classes of surface metamaterials
with exceptional optical, electronic, and quantum properties. This proposal is organized into four
main objectives, including: (1) the development of multi-scale and multi-material fabrication tools
that can achieve tunable periodicity and controlled disorder; (2) the design of hierarchical optical
metasurfaces by the multi-scale fabrication of periodic ordered nanoparticle arrays; (3) the creation
of monolithic polymer and 2D electronic metamaterials by controlling disorder in 3D over multiple
length scales; and (4) the exploration of quantum atomic meta-lattices by assembling atoms on
nanostructured potentials. Anticipated outcomes of multi-scale nanoscale metamaterials that show
unprecedented phenomena include multi-color nanoscale lasing and achromatic focusing, straininduced
and structure-tunable electronic modulation, and new states of quantum matter
Effective start/end date9/30/179/29/22


  • Office of Naval Research (N00014-17-1-3023 P00004)


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