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Alumni - Doctoral projects
© Julian Köpfler

Three-dimen­sional Chiral Metamaterials

Julian Köpfler – Hector Fellow Martin Wegener

Metama­te­ri­als get their function through a sophis­ti­cated microstruc­tur­ing. This allows to achieve mater­ial proper­ties that go far beyond those of ordinary materi­als. By intro­duc­ing so-called topolog­i­cally protected resonances mechan­i­cal vibra­tions in a mater­ial can be locally ampli­fied and made robust against distur­bances. This project is about the design and fabri­ca­tion of chiral metama­te­ri­als with topolog­i­cally protected resonances for the imple­men­ta­tion of a resonant mechan­i­cal laser scanner.

Metama­te­ri­als are ratio­nally designed struc­tures exhibit­ing effec­tive macro­scopic mater­ial proper­ties that go beyond those of ordinary materi­als. For instance, by intro­duc­ing so-called topolog­i­cally protected resonances it is possi­ble to locally enhance mechan­i­cal vibra­tions and make them robust against perturbations.

In this project, chiral metama­te­ri­als with topolog­i­cally protected resonances are designed and fabri­cated to realize a resonant mechan­i­cal laser-beam scanner (see Figure). Such laser-beam scanners are crucial for various appli­ca­tions such as LIDAR, confo­cal microscopy, projec­tor displays, and mater­ial processing.

The functional design of the microstruc­tured metama­te­r­ial has been success­fully worked out already. Now, a key challenge of the project is to find stiff and low-loss materi­als that are suited to fabri­cate the desired microstruc­tures via 3D laser litho­g­ra­phy. A promis­ing candi­date is pyrolized polymer or sintered glass derived from a quartz-polymer mixture.

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Figure 1: Artis­tic view of the designed microstruc­tured metama­te­r­ial beam with a topolog­i­cally protected resonance. The struc­ture converts a small push-pull excita­tion (e.g. given by a piezo­elec­tric trans­ducer) on the left-hand side to a large rotation on the right-hand side. With the added micromir­ror, the system can be used to scan a laser beam.

Julian Köpfler

Karlsruhe Insti­tute of Technology

Super­vised by

Prof. Dr.

Martin Wegener

Physics & Engineering

Disziplinen Martin WegenerHector Fellow since 2008