RMM Fibers – 3D Printing Nanophotonic Structures

Metamaterials are artificial nanostructures that affect light and are expensive and difficult to fabricate. A research team created a solution-based 3D-printing method that allows for the low-cost manufacture of metamaterials in desired shapes. By coupling evaporative co-assembly of silica and gold nanoparticles with 3D nanoprinting, the researchers created freeform, freestanding raspberry-like metamolecule (RMM) fibers in 3D.

They carried out studies to demonstrate the light-controlling powers of metamaterials created by integrating co-assembly techniques with 3D printing. They explored the effect of electric and magnetic dipole modes on the directed scattering of RMM fibers. They proved to reduce scattering in the visible spectrum of millimeter-scale RMM fibers.

By altering the ratio of silica and gold nanoparticles within the material, the researchers could fine-tune the metamaterial’s optical properties. The optical characteristics of metamolecules have been validated in solution for the first time using millimeter-sized RMM structures. The new method of producing metamaterials may aid in overcoming the hurdles of producing freestanding metamolecule clusters with programmed shapes and multiple compositions, bringing metamaterials closer to commercialization. This technology‘s adaptability allows for a wide range of material options, including quantum dots, catalyst particles, and polymers, making it relevant to various industries, including sensors and displays.

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