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Tsampikos Kottos




Phase-change materials (PCM) undergo a phase change transition from an insulating to a metallic phase via a physical mechanism like light-induced heating, external electric or magnetic field etc. Over the years, they have been proven a useful element in many photonic applications ranging from re-writable DVDs and all-optical modulators, to power limiters and switches. In most of these applications PCMs have been considered as stand-alone structures and not as an element of a photonic circuit like a photonic crystal. In this thesis we consider how the transport characteristics of such a PCM element are affected when it is a part of a photonic crystal. Using a numerical example, we show that the transmittance can become highly asymmetric within a broad range of light intensities. This effect can be utilized for directional light transmission (isolation), asymmetric optical limiting, or power switching.



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