Metamaterial-Based Reconfigurable Intelligent Surface: 3-D Meta-Atoms Controlled by Graphene Structures
preprintposted on 04.05.2021, 14:06 by Carlos Molero, Ángel Palomares-Caballero, Antonio Alex-Amor, Ignacio Parellada-Serrano, Francisco Gamiz, Pablo Padilla, Juan Valenzuela-Valdés
The upcoming high-speed wireless communication systems will be hosted by millimeter and sub-millimeter-wave frequency bands. At these frequencies, electromagnetic waves suffer from severe propagation losses and non-line-of-sight (NLOS) scenarios. A new wireless communication paradigm has arrived to resolve this situation through the use of reconfigurable intelligent surfaces (RIS). These metadevices are designed to reconfigure the wireless environment in a smart way. Traditional RIS designs based on the implementation of 2-D configurations have been considered up to now. However, 3-D structures enable an extra degree of freedom in the design that can be taken as an advantage for the development of improved RIS structures with advanced functionalities. This article proposes the implementation of a novel electronically-reconfigurable RIS based on the use of 3-D graphene meta-atoms. The reconfigurability lies on the graphene conductivity, easily tunable with a biasing voltage. Different conductivity values vary the meta-atom electromagnetic response, modifying the RIS functionality. A multi-objective optimization framework determines the optimal phase state of each meta-atom to accomplish the desired RIS performance. The operation of the RIS as an efficient beam steerer/splitter, absorber and polarization selector is validated with full-wave results.