Dichroic materials transmit one color of light and reflect a different color. The famous Lycurgus cup, a 4th-century Roman relic currently in the British Museum, looks green when lit from the same side as the viewer and red when backlit. Researchers at Wageningen University have now replicated the effect in 3-D-printed plastic, using basically the same materials science. Both achieve the unusual optical feat using a suspension of metallic nanoparticles. The Roman cup consists of gold and silver nanoparticles suspended in glass, while the modern one uses just gold particles in poly(vinyl alcohol). The results could have applications in optics, microscopy, and nanotechnology as well as in the arts, the researchers say.
Read the paper: Beilstein J. Nanotechnol. 2019, DOI: 10.3762/bjnano.10.43.
Credit: Vittorio Saggiomo
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