Optical Möbius symmetry in metamaterials

Phys Rev Lett. 2010 Dec 3;105(23):235501. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.105.235501. Epub 2010 Dec 2.


We experimentally observed a new topological symmetry in optical composites, namely, metamaterials. While it is not found yet in nature materials, the electromagnetic Möbius symmetry discovered in metamaterials is equivalent to the structural symmetry of a Möbius strip, with the number of twists controlled by the sign change of the electromagnetic coupling between the meta-atoms. We further demonstrate that metamaterials with different coupling signs exhibit resonance frequencies that depend only on the number but not the locations of the "twists," thus confirming its topological nature. The new topological symmetry found in metamaterials may enable unique functionalities in optical materials.