Broadband optical modulators based on graphene supercapacitors
American Chemical Society
5851 - 5857
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Optical modulators are commonly used in communication and information technology to control intensity, phase, or polarization of light. Electro-optic, electroabsorption, and acousto-optic modulators based on semiconductors and compound semiconductors have been used to control the intensity of light. Because of gate tunable optical properties, graphene introduces new potentials for optical modulators. The operation wavelength of graphene-based modulators, however, is limited to infrared wavelengths due to inefficient gating schemes. Here, we report a broadband optical modulator based on graphene supercapacitors formed by graphene electrodes and electrolyte medium. The transparent supercapacitor structure allows us to modulate optical transmission over a broad range of wavelengths from 450 nm to 2 μm under ambient conditions. We also provide various device geometries including multilayer graphene electrodes and reflection type device geometries that provide modulation of 35%. The graphene supercapacitor structure together with the high-modulation efficiency can enable various active devices ranging from plasmonics to optoelectronics. © 2013 American Chemical Society.