Integrated and Spectrally Selective Thermal Emitters Enabled by Layered Metamaterials

Yongkang Gong, Kang Li, Nigel Copner, Heng Liu, Meng Zhao, Bo Zhang, Andreas Pusch, Diana L. Huffaker, Sang Soon Oh

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Nanophotonic engineering of light-matter interaction at subwavelength scale allows thermal radiation that is fundamentally different from that of traditional thermal emitters and provides exciting opportunities for various thermal-photonic applications. We propose a new kind of integrated and electrically controlled thermal emitter that exploits layered metamaterials with lithography-free and dielectric/metallic nanolayers. We demonstrate both theoretically and experimentally that the proposed concept can create a strong photonic bandgap in the visible regime and allow small impedance mismatch at the infrared wavelengths, which gives rise to optical features of significantly enhanced emissivity at the broad infrared wavelengths of 1.4-14 um as well as effectively suppressed emissivity in the visible region. The electrically driven metamaterial devices are optically and thermally stable at temperature up to ~800 K with electro-optical conversion efficiency reaching ~30%. We believe that the proposed high efficiency thermal emitters will pave the way towards integrated infrared light source platforms for various thermal-photonic applications and particularly provide a novel alternative for cost-effective, compact, low glare, and energy-efficient infrared heating.
Original languageEnglish
Article number20200578
Pages (from-to)1285-1293
Number of pages9
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 5 Jan 2021


  • physics.optics


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