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Optical Properties of Chiral Three-Dimensional Photonic Crystals made from Semiconductors

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posted on 2023-01-12, 15:52 authored by Shun Takahashi, Takeyoshi Tajiri, Yasuhiko Arakawa, Satoshi Iwamoto, Willem L. Vos
We perform a theoretical and numerical study of the optical properties of both direct and inverse three-dimensional (3D) chiral woodpile structures, and a corresponding chiral Bragg stack. We compute transmission spectra in the helical direction for finite crystals, and photonic band structures, where we ensure the effective index of all structures to be the same. We find that both 3D structures show dual-band circular dichroism, where light with a particular circular polarization state - either left- or right-handed - reveals a broad stop band with major attenuation, whereas the other polarization state is transmitted nearly unimpeded. We observe such gaps in different frequency ranges, with alternating handedness. The appearance of the circular-polarized gaps is successfully interpreted with a physical model wherein the circular polarization either co-rotates or counter-rotates with the chiral structure, thereby effectively leading to a spatially-dependent or a constant refractive index, and thus to the presence or absence of a gap. We find that the presence or absence of circularly polarized gaps is tuned by the transverse periods perpendicular to the chiral axis in both the 3D direct and inverse chiral woodpile crystal structures. The tunability of circular dichroism may find applications as on-chip sensors for circularly polarized light and in the on-chip detection of chiral molecules.



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