Materials Optics unit

Olov Planthaber

Materials Optics is a unit under the Thin Film Physics Division. We combine material optics and development of ellipsometric methodology to analyse optical properties and nanostructures of bulk materials, thin films and their interfaces. Our main technique is spectroscopic ellipsometry which is based on analysis of changes in the state of polarization of light interacting with matter.


Our goal is to study advanced nanostructures by methods based on polarization optics and to contribute to the development of novel optical materials and devices. Our present research activities include studies of biological materials. We are especially interested in polarizing assemblies such as the Bouligand structure found in arthropods and stomatopods. We are also involved in biomimetic research where we fabricate photonic structures and meta-materials inspired by the studies of biological materials. We are using different techniques to realize the structures, in most cases thin film deposition by magnetron sputtering. In another project route is to explore the possibilities to use liquid crystal based optical elements for novel optical components including lenses with variable focal distance, switchable phase arrays and beam steering devices.


In our lab, The LiU Spectroscopic Ellipsometry Laboratory (The LiUSE-lab) we have a collection of excellent research grade instruments for optical polarization studies including a Mueller matrix dual rotating compensator ellipsometer (RC2, range: 210-1690 nm /0,7-5,9 eV), a Mueller matrix dual rotating compensator ellipsometer for in-situ use (RC2, range: 245-1690 nm /0,7-5,1 eV), a variable angle spectroscopic ellipsometer (VASE, range: 190-1690 nm / 0.7-6.5 eV) and an infrared variable angle spectroscopic ellipsometer (IR-VASE, range: 1.7-30 μm / 333-5900 1/cm). All instruments from J.A. Woollam Co. Together with our colleagues in the Terahertz Materials Analysis Center (THeMAC) we have ellipsometry equipment spanning a wavelength range from 190 nm to 3 mm.

Photo credit Olov Planthaber




Rui D. V. Fernandes, Alina Pranovich, Sergiy Valyukh, Andrea Zille, Tomas Hallberg, Kenneth Järrendahl (2024) Iridescence Mimicking in Fabrics: A Ultraviolet/Visible Spectroscopy Study BIOMIMETICS, Vol. 9, Article 71 Continue to DOI
Ray-Hua Horng, Po-Hsiang Cho, Jui-Che Chang, Anoop Kumar Singh, Sheng-Yuan Jhang, Po-Liang Liu, Dong-Sing Wuu, Samiran Bairagi, Cheng-Hsu Chen, Kenneth Järrendahl, Ching-Lien Hsiao (2024) Growth and Characterization of Sputtered InAlN Nanorods on Sapphire Substrates for Acetone Gas Sensing Nanomaterials, Vol. 14, Article 26 Continue to DOI
Samira Dorri, Naureen Ghafoor, Justinas Palisaitis, Sjoerd Stendahl, Anton Devishvili, Alexei Vorobiev, Fredrik Eriksson, Per O.Å. Persson, Jens Birch (2024) Enhanced quality of single crystal CrBx/TiBy diboride superlattices by controlling boron stoichiometry during sputter deposition Applied Surface Science, Article 159606 Continue to DOI


Sjoerd Broekhuijsen, Naureen Ghafoor, Alexei Vorobiev, Jens Birch, Fredrik Eriksson (2023) Synthesis and characterization of 11B4C containing Ni/Ti multilayers using combined neutron and X-ray reflectometry Optical Materials Express, Vol. 13, p. 1140-1149 Continue to DOI
Fredrik Eriksson, Naureen Ghafoor, Sjoerd Broekhuijsen, Grzegorz Greczynski, Norbert Schell, Jens Birch (2023) Morphology control in Ni/Ti multilayer neutron mirrors by ion-assisted interface engineering and B4C incorporation Optical Materials Express, Vol. 13, p. 1424-1439 Continue to DOI

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