Volume 86, Number 4, May 2009
|Number of page(s)||5|
|Section||Condensed Matter: Electronic Structure, Electrical, Magnetic and Optical Properties|
|Published online||05 June 2009|
Zitterbewegung of optical pulses near the Dirac point inside a negative-zero-positive index metamaterial
Department of Physics, Zhejiang University - Hangzhou 310027, China
2 Centre of Optical Sciences and Department of Physics, The Chinese University of Hong Kong - Shatin, N. T., Hong Kong
3 Department of Physics, Tongji University - Shanghai 200092, China
4 Department of Physics, Hong Kong Baptist University - Kowloon Tong, Hong Kong
Corresponding author: firstname.lastname@example.org
Accepted: 5 May 2009
By numerically solving Maxwell's equation with boundary conditions, we have demonstrated the optical Zitterbewegung effect by means of electromagnetic pulses propagating through a negative-zero-positive index metamaterial (NZPIM). We find that a finite pulse with frequencies near the Dirac point of the NZPIM diffuses and oscillates, and its output pulse from the finite NZPIM slab becomes an oscillating pulse with a characteristic frequency independent of the slab thickness. We further find that the oscillating properties of the optical Zitterbewegung effect are strongly dependent on the pulse parameters: such as pulse duration and pulse transverse spatial width. The physical nature of such oscillation effects is due to the interference between the upper and lower high-transmittance passbands at both sides of the Dirac point of the NZPIM slab, which is similar to the Zitterbewegung of electron wave packets.
PACS: 78.20.Ci – Optical constants (including refractive index, complex dielectric constant, absorption, reflection and transmission coefficients, emissivity) / 41.20.Jb – Electromagnetic wave propagation; radiowave propagation / 03.65.Ta – Foundations of quantum mechanics; measurement theory
© EPLA, 2009
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