Metamaterial Based Circuits and Devices for Terahertz Frequencies
Theme: Metamaterial Based Devices in CMOS and III-V Technologies for Terahertz and Millimeter-wave Applications

Sponsors: NSF, DARPA, ONR


We are working to close the “terahertz gap” (0.1 - 10THz, λ = 3mm - 30μm) using active electronic control of metamaterials. Metamaterials typically consist of structured composites with patterned metallic subwavelength inclusions. These mesoscopic systems are built from the bottom up, at the unit cell level, to yield specific electromagnetic properties. Individual components respond resonantly to the electric, magnetic or both components of the electromagnetic field. In this way electromagnetic MMs can be designed to yield a desired response at frequencies from the microwave through to the near visible. We aim to build active free space and waveguided optoelectronic circuits operating in the THz frequency regime using metamaterials in both CMOS and III-V technology.


1.Broadband absorbers in millimeter-wave and terahertz frequencies

2. Low cost fabrication of metamaterials on arbitrary substrates (flexible, large area, conformal etc)

3. Metamaterial based multiparameter (spectrum, polarization, phase) imager

4. Metamaterial inspired terahertz amplitude and phase modulator

5. Overcoming limitations of metamaterials through embedding of active electronic devices



We have demonstrated a terahertz quasi-optical modulator with record modulation depth (33%) and input frequency (10 MHz) implemented in commercial 0.25um GaAs HEMT process (Optics Express 2011). A board-level metamaterial based detector and focal plane array imager was also demonstrated at RF frequencies and scalable to terahertz frequencies (Physical Review Letters 2012, Applied Physics Letters 2014). A tunable absorber/reflector that can be used as spatial light modulator was also demonstrated at RF frequencies using p-i-n diodes (Applied Physics Letters 2013). Loss compensation in metamaterials using active devices was also demonstrated for the first time (Optics Express 2012). We are also working actively on multispectral and polarization sensitive imagers spanning millimeter-wave to infrared wavelengths which we implemented in 45nm CMOS process; access to the technology was provided through the DARPA LEAP program. Several absorbers (single, dual and broadband) have been demonstrated by microfabrication of metallic structures on flexible parylene and polyimide substrates (Applied Physics Letters 2011). We are also working on energy harvesting using metamaterial resonator and overcoming the narrow bandwidth issues using non-foster impedance matching. This is under consideration for publication (Applied Physics Letters 2015). More recently, we demonstrated a unique terahertz plasmonic slot waveguide and modulator at terahertz frequencies based on interferometric approach in a GaAs HEMT processes.


Selected Publications:

  1. W. Xu, S. Sonkusale, Microwave Diode switchable metamaterial reflector/absorber", Applied Physics Letters, 103 (3), 031902-031902-4.
  2. P. Singh, C. Mutzel, S. MacNaughton and S. Sonkusale, In-situ large area fabrication of multi-layered metamaterials on arbitrary substrates, Progress in Electromagnetics Research (PIER), 141, 117-133
  3. P. Singh, S. Kabiri Ameri, L. Chao, M. N. Afsar and S. Sonkusale, Broadband Metamaterial Millimeterwave Absorbers Based on Embedding of Dual Resonators, Progress in Electromagnetics Research (PIER), 142, 625-638
  4. W. Xu, D. Shrekenhamer, S. Venkatesh, D. Schurig, S. Sonkusale and W. Padilla, "Experimental Realization of Metamaterial Detector Focal Plane Array", Physical Review Letters, vol. 109, issue 19, 177401, 2012
  5. W. Xu, W. Padilla, S. Sonkusale, "Loss Compensation in Metamaterials through embedding of active transistor based negative differential resistance circuits", Optics Express, Vol. 20 Issue 20, pp.22406-22411, 2012
  6. D. Shrekenhamer, S. Rout, A. C. Strikwerda, C. Bingham, R. D. Averitt, S. Sonkusale, W. J. Padilla, High Speed Terahertz Modulation from Metamaterials with Embedded High Electron Mobility Transistors, Optics Express, Vol. 19 Issue 10, pp.9968-9975, 2011.

For more publications, please go this page.