Browse Definitions :
Definition

metamaterial

A metamaterial is a metallic or semiconductor substance whose properties depend on its inter-atomic structure rather than on the composition of the atoms themselves. Certain metamaterials bend visible light rays in the opposite sense from traditional refractive media. Some metamaterials also exhibit such behavior at infrared (IR) wavelengths.

A light beam passing from air or a vacuum into a common refractive medium such as glass, water or quartz is bent at the surface boundary so its path inside the material is more nearly perpendicular to the surface than its path outside the material (illustration A). The extent of the bending depends on the angle at which the ray strikes the boundary and also on the index of refraction of the medium. All common transparent materials have positive indices of refraction. A metamaterial bends an incident ray so its internal direction is reversed (illustration B).

The first metamaterials were developed by the physicist W. E. Kock in the 1940s. Another physicist, Rodger Walser, coined the term "metamaterial" in the late 1990s to describe such substances. Possible applications of transparent metamaterials with negative indices of refraction include red and IR lasers, optical communications systems, spectrometry, monitoring systems to detect trace gases in the atmosphere, medical diagnostic equipment and optical cloaking devices.

This was last updated in August 2008

Start the conversation

Send me notifications when other members comment.

Please create a username to comment.

-ADS BY GOOGLE

File Extensions and File Formats

Powered by:

SearchCompliance

  • regulatory compliance

    Regulatory compliance is an organization's adherence to laws, regulations, guidelines and specifications relevant to its business...

  • privacy compliance

    Privacy compliance is a company's accordance with established personal information protection guidelines, specifications or ...

  • data governance policy

    A data governance policy is a documented set of guidelines for ensuring that an organization's data and information assets are ...

SearchSecurity

  • asymmetric cryptography (public key cryptography)

    Asymmetric cryptography, also known as public-key cryptography, is a process that uses a pair of related keys -- one public key ...

  • Evil Corp

    Evil Corp is an international cybercrime network that uses malicious software to steal money from its victims' bank accounts.

  • Plundervolt

    Plundervolt is a method of hacking that involves depriving an Intel chip of power so that processing errors occur.

SearchHealthIT

  • telemedicine (telehealth)

    Telemedicine is the remote delivery of healthcare services, such as health assessments or consultations, over the ...

  • Project Nightingale

    Project Nightingale is a controversial partnership between Google and Ascension, the second largest health system in the United ...

  • medical practice management (MPM) software

    Medical practice management (MPM) software is a collection of computerized services used by healthcare professionals and ...

SearchDisasterRecovery

SearchStorage

  • 3D NAND flash

    3D NAND is a type of non-volatile flash memory in which the memory cells are stacked vertically in multiple layers.

  • M.2 SSD

    An M.2 SSD is a solid-state drive (SSD) that conforms to a computer industry specification written for internally mounted storage...

  • RAID (redundant array of independent disks)

    RAID (redundant array of independent disks) is a way of storing the same data in different places on multiple hard disks or ...

Close