8 February 2018 Optical filter based on Fabry-Perot structure using a suspension of goethite nanoparticles as electro-optic material
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We have investigated the feasibility of optical tunable filters based on a Fabry-Perot etalon that uses a suspension of goethite (α-FeOOH) nanorods as electro-optic material for application in optical telecommunications in the near IR range. These synthetic nanoparticles have a high optical anisotropy that give rise to a very strong Kerr effect in their colloidal suspensions. Currently, these particles are dispersed in aqueous solvent, with pH2 to ensure the colloidal electrostatic stability. However, the high conductivity of these suspensions requires using high-frequency electric fields (f > 1 MHz), which brings about a high power consumption of the driver. To decrease the field frequency, we have changed the solvent to ethylene glycol which has a lower electrical conductivity than the aqueous solvent. We have built a Fabry-Perot cell, filled with this colloidal suspension in the isotropic phase, and showed that a phase shift of 14 nm can be obtained in a field of 3V/μm. Therefore, the device can operate as a tunable filter. A key advantage of this filter is that it is, by principle, completely insensitive to the polarization of the input light. However, several technological issues still need to be solved, such as ionic contamination of the suspension from the blocking layers, and dielectrophoretic and thermal effects.
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Samir Abbas, Samir Abbas, Laurent Dupont, Laurent Dupont, Ivan Dozov, Ivan Dozov, Patrick Davidson, Patrick Davidson, Corinne Chanéac, Corinne Chanéac, "Optical filter based on Fabry-Perot structure using a suspension of goethite nanoparticles as electro-optic material", Proc. SPIE 10555, Emerging Liquid Crystal Technologies XIII, 105550G (8 February 2018); doi: 10.1117/12.2301290; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2301290

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