Rising Stars 2020:

Sara Kandil

PhD Candidate

University of California, San Diego

Areas of Interest

  • Applied Electromagnetics
  • Photonics
  • Metasurfaces
  • Electromagnetic Modeling
  • Quantum Tunneling


Metasurfaces for spin-control of surface waves


Metasurfaces have been studied extensively in recent years as important platforms for controlling and guiding electromagnetic waves. They allow for new degrees of freedom in controlling spin-momentum properties, also called quantum spin-hall effect. In my research, we introduce different metasurface designs that allow for controlling and steering different polarizations of surface waves. We also study a new type of surface waves that is supported by our design which is called chiral surface waves. Chiral surface waves are circularly polarized waves that possess two transverse spins, one due to out-of-plane field rotation which is intrinsic to any surface wave, and the other is due to in-plane field rotation which is enforced by the design. Both spins follow the spin-momentum locking resulting in a unidirectional wave propagation. Controlling the spin-orbit interactions of electromagnetic waves is of great importance for applications in spintronics and valleytronics.


Sara Kandil is currently a PhD student at University of California San Diego in Electrical Engineering, where she is part of the Applied Electromagnetics lab under the supervision of Prof. Dan Sievenpiper. She received her B.Sc. and M.Sc. degrees in Electrical Engineering from Cairo University in 2014 and 2017, respectively. Her research interests span the areas of applied Electromagnetics and photonics with a focus on light-matter interactions and controlling spin-orbit interactions of surface waves using metasurfaces. She is also interested in studying electron emission resulting from the interaction of light with hydrogen atoms for making photo-gated solid-state ion sources.

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