A special class of nano-layered hyperbolic metamaterials (HMMs) has received special attention recently due to their unique optical property, namely that the dispersion of the dielectric constant for HMMs exhibits a topological transition in the iso-frequency surface from an ellipsoid to a hyperboloid. Using aluminum in metal-dielectric nano-layered structures offers several advantages over currently used noble metals. The plasma frequency of the aluminum is higher than that of gold or silver. As a result, aluminum exhibits metallic characteristics over a broader spectral range than gold and silver. In addition, SiO2 is used as the dielectric for this hyperbolic metamaterial because it could be easily integrated into current CMOS technology and has near-zero losses in the UV region. In this investigation, we use generalized spectroscopic ellipsometry to study the distribution of Al within nano-layered samples fabricated using the RF sputtering technique under varying fabrication parameters with a goal of achieving hyperbolic dispersion. In our work, we developed an approach to analyzing generalized spectroscopic ellipsometry data for anisotropic Al/SiO2 structures with strong absorption, which uses the 4x4 transfer matrix approach, also known as the Berreman-formalism. This developed approach allows obtaining permittivity in all three dimensions and importing theoretical permittivity models which are tailored to the Al/SiO2 material’s optical and electrical properties. In this work, we investigate the methods of reducing Al oxidation during fabrication by means of varying the fabrication temperatures and pressure by fitting data from RC2 Ellipsometer (A.C. Woollam Co.), which has dual rotating compensators. Applications for this Al/SiO2 hyperbolic metamaterial will also be discussed.
Priscilla Kelly, Andrew C. Martin, and Lyuba Kuznetsova, "Spectroscopic ellipsometry for anisotropic nano-layered Al/SiO2 metamaterial with hyperbolic dispersion," Proc. SPIE 9919, Nanophotonic Materials XIII, 991909 (Presented at SPIE Nanoscience + Engineering: August 30, 2016; Published: 16 September 2016); https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2237245.
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