RSPE Seminar

Structured light and structured surface plasmon polaritons from metasurfaces

Professor Federico Capasso
School of Engineering and Applied Sciences,
Harvard University, Cambridge

Abstract: Patterning surfaces with subwavelength spaced metallo-dielectric features (metasurfaces) allows one to locally control the amplitude, phase and polarization of the scattered light, allowing one to generate complex wavefronts such as optical vortices of different topological charge and dislocated wavefronts.1,2 Recent results on achromatic metasurfaces will be presented including lenses and collimators. Metasurfaces have also become a powerful tool to shape surface plasmon polaritons (SPPs) beams. I will present new experiments on imaging SPP that have revealed the formation of Cherenkov SPP wakes and demonstrated  polarization sensitive light couplers that control the directionality of SPP and lenses which demultiplex focused SPP beams depending on their wavelength and polarization.

1. N. Yu and F. Capasso Nature Materials 13, 139 (2014)

2. P. Genevet and F. Capasso Reports on Progress in Physics 78, 24401 (2015)


Bio: Federico Capasso is the Robert Wallace Professor of Applied Physics at Harvard University, which he joined in 2003 after 27 years at Bell Labs where he was Member of Technical Staff, Department Head and Vice President for Physical Research.

His research has focused on nanoscale science and technology encompassing a broad range of topics. He pioneered band-structure engineering of semiconductor nanostructures and devices, invented and first demonstrated the quantum cascade laser and investigated QED forces including the first measurement of a repulsive Casimir force. His most recent contributions are new plasmonic devices and flat optics based on metasurfaces. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engineering, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences. His awards include the King Faisal Prize, the IEEE Edison Medal, the SPIE Gold Medal, the American Physical Society Arthur Schawlow Prize in Laser Science, the Jan Czochralski Award for lifetime achievements in Materials Science, the IEEE Sarnoff Award in Electronics, the Materials Research Society Medal, the Wetherill Medal of the Franklin Institute, the Rank Prize in Optoelectronics, the Optical Society Wood Prize, the Berthold Leibinger Future Prize, the Julius Springer Prize in Applied Physics, the European Physical Society Quantum Electronics Prize.

Date & time

Fri 20 Mar 2015, 11am–12pm


Seminar Room, Cockcroft/Oliphant Link Building 58d, Mills Road, ANU


Staff, students and public welcome