Terahertz light cages!

New paper from our Sydney Terahertz Lab! Light cages can provide diffractionless propagation in free space, so we 3D printed a few modules with various materials (stiff and flexible resins, ceramics) and tested out what they can do.

We took some near-field images of the straight and bent waveguides with our new fiber-coupled microprobes, and I was stoked to see the conformal map model of bent waveguides come to life. We heated up a ceramic light cage beyond what polymers can withstand, and showed direct-in-core sensing. We also introduced two new Figures of Merit which compare light cages with free space Gaussian beams (our fiercest competitor in the terahertz range).

Thank you Alessio Stefani, Boris Kuhlmey, Mohammad Mirkhalaf, and Hala Zreiqat for the collaboration. This work couldn’t have been possible without our talented students Benjamin Davies and Zizhen Ding, and the amazing Justin Digweed from ANFF NSW.

https://doi.org/10.1021/acsphotonics.2c00386

For those without access, I include the pre-edited version here (please do not redistribute, and cite the ACS Photonics version):

10.1021acsphotonics.2c00386.pdf

And to top it all off, a cool near field measurement of the bent waveguide can be seen below, compared with COMSOL simulations:

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