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Temporal metamaterials with gain and loss

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posted on 2023-01-12, 13:42 authored by Victor Pacheco-Peña, Nader Engheta
Manipulation of wave-matter interactions in systems with loss and gain have opened new mechanisms to control wave propagation at will. Metamaterials and metasurfaces having spatially inhomogeneous loss and gain have been studied in the past few years by exploiting parity-time (PT) symmetry concepts inspired from quantum-physics. In this work we theoretically study the control of light-matter interactions in spatially unbounded metamaterials having a time-modulated permittivity whose imaginary part is temporally modulated to induce loss and gain, while the real part stays unchanged. We show both numerically and theoretically how such temporally modulated multistepped metamaterials with loss and gain can be equivalent to a temporal effective metamaterial having an effective permittivity modelled by a step function in time. Interestingly, it is shown how the amplitude of a monochromatic electromagnetic wave traveling inside such temporal metamaterials can experience spatiotemporal decay or amplification depending on the values of loss and gain added into the system, while its wavenumber is preserved. We envision that our findings may open new avenues in exploration of potential applications of temporal metamaterials in signal amplification and loss mitigation.



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