Metamaterials are artificial materials with characteristics beyond those found in nature that unlock routes to material and device functionalities not available using conventional approaches.
Their electromagnetic, acoustic or mechanical behaviour is not simply dictated by averaging out the properties of their constituent elements, but emerge from the precise control of geometry, arrangement, alignment, material composition, shape, size and density of their constituent elements.
The ‘Metamaterials’ topic is inherently interdisciplinary, spanning advanced materials (plasmonics, active materials, RF, high index contrast, 2D materials, phase change materials, transparent conductive oxides, soft materials), theoretical physics, quantum physics, chemistry, biology, engineering (mechanical and electrical), acoustics, computer sciences (e.g. artificial intelligence, high performance computing), and robotics.
In terms of applications, metamaterials have phenomenal potential, in important areas, from energy to ICT, defence & security, aerospace, and healthcare. Numerous market research studies predict very significant growth over the next decade, for example, by 2030 the metamaterial device market is expected to reach a value of over $10bn (Lux Research 2019).