Researchers Confirm the Flat Focusing Mirror Effect

An international team of researchers from the U.S., Taiwan, and Spain has experimentally demonstrated the flat focusing mirror effect, which was initially predicted by them.  

Physical characteristics of the effect and simplicity of its duplication is a great promise for use in microelectronics, photonics, and on the chip systems, where a single microcircuit operates as a whole device.  

Flat Mirror’s Ability to Focus Light 

The flat focusing mirror effect based on a photon jet made of the reflection mode was hypothetically confirmed in numerous published papers.  

“Mirrors are used to focus radiation. The most common example is a flashlight. A parabolic mirror inside it focuses light, and an ordinary flat mirror can not. However, it turned out that it can be modified in an extremely simple way,” Professor Igor Minin, project manager at the TPU Division for Electronic Engineering, says.  

The team was able to make a flat mirror to focus light employing micro-sized parts of a dielectric material, such as glass.  

“In the experiments, we used pieces of a rectangular shape; however, the shape is not important. When light falls on this piece, the reflected radiation is focused in the form of a photon stream. We have managed to prove this experimentally,” Igor Minin explains.  

Simulation results of normalized power flow patterns for the flat dielectric thin rectangle in reflection mode at incident angles 45°. The incident wavelength for the thin rectangle is 405 nm. [Image: Scientific Reports]

In reality, this effect makes the use of flat mirrors for focusing much easier.  

“We do not need to change mirror shape, and the focusing process is extremely simple. We only need a mirror, dielectric pieces, and a radiation source. It is important that we can use a compact mirror. Unlike a curved one with the same parameters, flat mirrors are much easier to produce. Thus, it can be used in miniature devices, and due to its simple shape, it can be easily combined with other elements. These are advantages compared to both curved mirrors and other focusing methods,” the professor detailed in the team’s paper.  

In the future, the team of scientists plans to conduct studies in the application of this effect, such as manipulating nanoparticles and send optical information. The study has been published in the journal Scientific Reports under the name of “Experimental observation of flat focusing mirror based on photonic jet effect.”

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