Optical phase change materials (O-PCMs) are a unique class of materials which exhibit extraordinarily large optical property change (e.g. refractive index change > 1) when undergoing a solid-state phase transition. These materials, exemplified by Mott insulators such as VO2 and chalcogenide compounds, have been exploited for a plethora of emerging applications including optical switching, photonic memories, reconfigurable metasurfaces, and non-volatile display. These traditional phase change materials, however, generally suffer from large optical losses even in their dielectric states, which fundamentally limits the performance of optical devices based on traditional O-PCMs. In this talk, we will discuss our progress in developing O-PCMs with unprecedented broadband low optical loss and their applications in novel photonic systems, such as high-contrast switches and routers towards a reconfigurable optical chip.
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