Flexible metasurface patches for mm-wave applications

In this work, we present a flexible metasurface that operates in the mm-wavelength region. A major problem in modern technology is that many systems, e.g. antennas, are designed for specific functionality. If new functionality is needed, then a new antenna needs to be made and installed, a wasteful and costly process.

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Pictures of a) a conventional metasurface on silicon and b) our flexible metasurface.

But using metasurfaces we can create artificial materials with custom properties that could be used to add new functionality to existing systems or to improve upon existing technology, e.g. by correcting antenna aberrations. However, a key question is “How do we get our metasurface onto a pre-existing object?”

Together with the Synthetic Optics and mm-Wave groups here in St Andrews, we have demonstrated flexible metasurfaces for the mm-wave wavelength range. These metasurfaces can realize the broad functionality or conventional, rigid, metasurfaces, but are designed so that they can be used as patches on existing objects.

The work is published in Applied Physics Letters.

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