Weak localisation enhanced ultrathin scattering media
preprintposted on 2023-01-12, 15:11 authored by Ruben Pompe, Dominic Meiers, Walter Pfeiffer, Georg von Freymann
The brilliant white appearance of ultrathin scattering media with low refractive index contrast and the underlying radiative transport phenomena fascinate scientists for more than a decade. Examples of such systems are the scales of beetles of the genus Cyphochilus, photonic network structures or disordered Bragg stacks (DBS). While previous studies relate the highly efficient scattering in the scales to the anisotropy of the intra-scale network and diffusive light transport, the coherent radiation propagation dynamics remained unaccounted for. Here, we identify different coherent light transport regimes using time and spatially resolved coherent light scattering spectroscopy. At least 20% of the collected scattered light originates from weakly localised random photonic modes, in contrast to solely diffusive light transport assumed to date. The identification of this significant role of weak localisation in ultrathin brilliant scattering media establishes a new design paradigm for efficient scattering optical materials.