Photonic crystals are periodically arranged structures engineered at scales comparable to the electromagnetic wavelength that are designed to trap and guide light. At frequencies close the photonic band edges, the group velocity of light is dramatically slowed down and, therefore, photons of those wavelengths couple very intensively with the medium. We have exploited this mechanism to achieved magneto-optical enhancement in 3D magneto-photonic crystals. We realized nanometric conformal coatings of 3D crystals, which might be eventually exploited in Faraday isolators for optical communications as well as applications beyond photonics.
Opal photonic crystals (PhCs)
Impregnation of PhCs with magnetic nanoparticles
(Upper left) Photonic crystals (PhCs) were synthesized by Dr. A. Blanco et al. (ICMM-CSIC Madrid). (Upper right) Reflectance spectrum showing the photonic bandgap (PBG), i.e., the range of wavelengths where the propagation of light is forbidden and the reflectance is minimal. (Lower) Conformal coating of PhCs using microwave-assisted chemistry approach (collaboration with Prof. A. Roig, ICMAB)