Three-Dimensional Network Photonic Crystals via Cyclic Size Reduction/ Infiltration of Sea Urchin Exoskeleton


  • We gratefully acknowledge J. Murry for the hot isostatic pressing, T. Deng for inspiration and helpful discussions, S. Juhl for SEM, J. C. Jafolla (Surface Optics Corp.) for directional reflectivity measurements, L. Carr (BNL) for some early IR measurement attempts, and S. Johnson for the MPB package and for helpful suggestions about the simulation work. This research was supported in part by the Dupont–MIT Alliance and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.


original image

A reduction and infiltration process for a naturally occurring 3D bicontinuous structure is demonstrated. A sea urchin exoskeleton can be engineered in a top–down fashion to create low absorption, high dielectric contrast photonic crystals with a stop band in the mid-IR regime. The Figure shows a sample cut in half where one half (right) has been pyrolyzed, demonstrating the excellent structural fidelity of the replication-reduction process.