Degree Type


Date of Award


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy


Physics and Astronomy

First Advisor

Kai-ming Ho


In this thesis, we theoretically study the electromagnetic wave propagation in several passive and active optical components and devices including 2-D photonic crystals, straight and curved waveguides, organic light emitting diodes (OLEDs), and etc. Several optical designs are also presented like organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells and solar concentrators.

The first part of the thesis focuses on theoretical investigation. First, the plane-wave-based transfer (scattering) matrix method (TMM) is briefly described with a short review of photonic crystals and other numerical methods to study them (Chapter 1 and 2). Next TMM, the numerical method itself is investigated in details and developed in advance to deal with more complex optical systems. In chapter 3, TMM is extended in curvilinear coordinates to study curved nanoribbon waveguides. The problem of a curved structure is transformed into an equivalent one of a straight structure with spatially dependent tensors of dielectric constant and magnetic permeability. In chapter 4, a new set of localized basis orbitals are introduced to locally represent electromagnetic field in photonic crystals as alternative to planewave basis.

The second part of the thesis focuses on the design of optical devices. First, two examples of TMM applications are given. The first example is the design of metal grating structures as replacements of ITO to enhance the optical absorption in OPV cells (chapter 6). The second one is the design of the same structure as above to enhance the light extraction of OLEDs (chapter 7). Next, two design examples by ray tracing method are given, including applying a microlens array to enhance the light extraction of OLEDs (chapter 5) and an all-angle wide-wavelength design of solar concentrator (chapter 8).

In summary, this dissertation has extended TMM which makes it capable of treating complex optical systems. Several optical designs by TMM and ray tracing method are also given as a full complement of this work.


Copyright Owner

Zhuo Ye



Date Available


File Format


File Size

119 pages

Included in

Physics Commons