Low-Cost Production of Photonic Bandgap Materials Through Bubbling

Report No. ARL-TR-4277
Authors: Daniel J. OBrien; Eric D. Wetzel
Date/Pages: September 2007; 38 pages
Abstract: Photonic bandgap materials (PBGMs) prevent the propagation of electromagnetic waves across certain wavelengthsthe so-called bandgap. This behavior is the result of periodic variations in the materials dielectric constant, with the location of the bandgap as a function of the spacing between dielectric features. PBGMs show great promise in optoelectronics as waveguides and in sensors. Unfortunately, the large-scale production of PBGMs is difficult. This report proposes a simple low-cost method for PBGM production. A device has been constructed that produces micrometer-sized, monodisperse bubbles that can be assembled into a crystal lattice by surface tension. The bubble crystals can be solidified and preserved using an aqueous acrylamide monomer solution as the medium for bubbling.
Distribution: Approved for public release
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Last Update / Reviewed: September 1, 2007