Optical transmission measurements were made on 98% porosity silica aerogel samples under various degrees of uniaxial strain. Uniaxially compressed aerogels exhibit large birefringence, proportional to the amount of compression, up to the 15% strain studied. The birefringence is mostly reversible and reproducible through multiple compression-decompression cycles. Our study demonstrates that uniaxially strained high porosity aerogels can be used as tunable waveplates in a broad spectral range.
MSU Digital Commons Citation
Bhupathi, Pradeep; Hwang, Jungseek; Martin, Rodica; Blankstein, Jackson; Jaworski, Lukas; Mulders, Norbert; Tanner, David B.; and Lee, Yoonseok, "Aerogel Waveplates" (2009). Department of Physics and Astronomy Faculty Scholarship and Creative Works. 5.