While the use of liquid crystals (LCs) over the visible region is ubiquitous in flat-screen displays, there has been little by the way of applications at other wavelengths. Specifically, notwithstanding the continuing permittivity anisotropy to be found at longer wavelengths, there has been virtually no development in the microwave domain. This is largely due to the fact that scaling up the micrometer-thick LC layers used for visible radiation to millimetre dimensions is seen as impractical. In this study, it is shown how, using thin slits in metal structures, a completely new generation of LC devices for use at microwaves may be realized. Such structures include slatted metal Fabry–Perot resonators, beam-steering devices, thin flexible voltage tunable filters and even cascade structures with strongly enhanced and reshaped microwave fields.
One contribution of 18 to a Discussion Meeting Issue ‘New directions in liquid crystals’.
- © 2006 The Royal Society