Cages for Light Go From Concept to Reality

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Science  19 Nov 1999:
Vol. 286, Issue 5444, pp. 1500-1502
DOI: 10.1126/science.286.5444.1500

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Once a theorist's dream, the intricate latticelike structures called photonic crystals can serve as the optical equivalent of semiconductors, trapping, guiding, and filtering light much as semiconductors manipulate electrons. Photonic crystals could reduce the scale and increase the efficiency of optical circuits by orders of magnitude--if regular lattices can be built that are minute enough to snare light. Theorists are now teaming up with materials scientists to realize that promise.