PerspectiveApplied Physics

Obtaining optical properties on demand

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Science  29 May 2015:
Vol. 348, Issue 6238, pp. 973-974
DOI: 10.1126/science.aac4360

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With the developments in nanotechnology that enable atoms, singly or in clumps, to be moved and arranged at will, we now have the capability of creating metamaterials that can display properties not found in naturally occurring media. Today lenses are being developed that image more sharply than glass lenses, and materials can be designed that make objects invisible or bend light beams into any chosen trajectory. We look here at the impact that metamaterials are having on photonics (see the figure).