A spatial light modulator for terahertz beams
A spatial light modulator for terahertz beams Spatial light modulators that control the spatial transmission of a terahertz beam either electrically or optically, have been difficult to build due to the lack of suitable materials. Here we propose the use of active terahertz metamaterials for the construction of a multi-pixel spatial modulator for terahertz beams. Our first-generation device consists of a 4 x 4 pixel array, where each pixel is an array of sub-wavelength-sized split-ring resonator elements fabricated on a semiconductor substrate, and is independently controlled by applying an external voltage. Through terahertz transmission experiments, we show that the spatial modulator has a uniform modulation depth of around 40 percent across all pixels at the resonant frequency. Around this operating frequency, the crosstalk between pixels is negligible. This device can operate under small voltage levels, at room temperature, with low power consumption and reasonably high switching speed, and can therefore benefit future applications in terahertz imaging and communications.
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