Disorder-Induced Topological State Transition in Photonic Metamaterials

Changxu Liu, Wenlong Gao, Biao Yang, Shuang Zhang*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The topological state transition has been widely studied based on the quantized topological band invariant such as the Chern number for the system without intense randomness that may break the band structures. We numerically demonstrate the disorder-induced state transition in the photonic topological systems for the first time. Instead of applying the ill-defined topological band invariant in a disordered system, we utilize an empirical parameter to unambiguously illustrate the state transition of the topological metamaterials. Before the state transition, we observe a robust surface state with well-confined electromagnetic waves propagating unidirectionally, immune to the disorder from permittivity fluctuation up to 60% of the original value. During the transition, a hybrid state composed of a quasiunidirectional surface mode and intensively localized hot spots is established, a result of the competition between the topological protection and Anderson localization.

Original languageEnglish
Article number183901
Number of pages6
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Volume119
Issue number18
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2017
Externally publishedYes

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