Self-induced torque in hyperbolic metamaterials

Pavel Ginzburg*, Alexey V. Krasavin, Alexander N. Poddubny, Pavel A. Belov, Yuri S. Kivshar, Anatoly V. Zayats

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    51 Citations (Scopus)


    Optical forces constitute a fundamental phenomenon important in various fields of science, from astronomy to biology. Generally, intense external radiation sources are required to achieve measurable effects suitable for applications. Here we demonstrate that quantum emitters placed in a homogeneous anisotropic medium induce self-torques, aligning themselves in the well-defined direction determined by an anisotropy, in order to maximize their radiation efficiency. We develop a universal quantum-mechanical theory of self-induced torques acting on an emitter placed in a material environment. The theoretical framework is based on the radiation reaction approach utilizing the rigorous Langevin local quantization of electromagnetic excitations. We show more than 2 orders of magnitude enhancement of the self-torque by an anisotropic metamaterial with hyperbolic dispersion, having negative ratio of permittivity tensor components, in comparison with conventional anisotropic crystals with the highest naturally available anisotropy.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article number036804
    JournalPhysical Review Letters
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - 19 Jul 2013


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