In this chapter we discuss design processes of two photonic structures. Both examples involve multilayer structures that are common in optics and photonics. In engineering and industrial applications, design issues of these structures are commonly encountered. The design processes described here illustrate the need for combining other numerical methods with FDTD. In Section 14.1, a systematic design process is discussed that starts with an ab initio design phase based on effective medium theory. In Section 14.2, a second example is discussed, in which a global optimization scheme based on a genetic algorithm is combined with the analytical characteristic matrix approach for a thin film stack made up of isotropic and anisotropic materials. Both structures are designed for application in liquid crystal displays (LCDs).
• Designing low-reflection, multilayer wire-grid polarizers
• Designing wavelength-selective, polarizing reflector films
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