The present invention provides systems, articles, and methods for discriminating electromagnetic radiation based upon the angle of incidence of the electromagnetic radiation. In some cases, the materials and systems described herein can be capable of inhibiting reflection of electromagnetic radiation (e.g., the materials and systems can be capable of transmitting and/or absorbing electromagnetic radiation) within a given range of angles of incidence at a first incident surface, while substantially reflecting electromagnetic radiation outside the range of angles of incidence at a second incident surface (which can be the same as or different from the first incident surface). A photonic material comprising a plurality of periodically occurring separate domains can be used, in some cases, to selectively transmit and/or selectively absorb one portion of incoming electromagnetic radiation while reflecting another portion of incoming electromagnetic radiation, based upon the angle of incidence. In some embodiments, one domain of the photonic material can include an isotropic dielectric function, while another domain of the photonic material can include an anisotropic dielectric function. In some instances, one domain of the photonic material can include an isotropic magnetic permeability, while another domain of the photonic material can include an anisotropic magnetic permeability. In some embodiments, non-photonic materials (e.g., materials with relatively large scale features) can be used to selectively absorb incoming electromagnetic radiation based on angle of incidence.
This invention was made with government support under Contract No. W911NF-07-D-0004 awarded by the Army Research Office, Contract No. DE-SC0001299 awarded by the Department of Energy, and Contract No. DMR0819762 awarded by the National Science Foundation. The government has certain rights in this invention.