Split-ring Resonator (SRR)

Split-ring Resonator (SRR)

A split-ring resonator (SRR) is an artificial structure found in metamaterials. It is a sort of artificial metamaterial structure that exhibits unique electromagnetic properties not seen in natural materials. Its goal is to achieve the necessary magnetic susceptibility (magnetic response) in a variety of metamaterials up to 200 terahertz. These structures are commonly employed in research and technology to manipulate electromagnetic waves in unique ways, especially in metamaterials, microwave engineering, and photonics.

These media provide the necessary strong magnetic coupling to an applied electromagnetic field, which is not accessible in ordinary materials. A periodic array of split ring resonators, for example, can induce an effect known as negative permeability.

A magnetic flux passing through the metal rings induces rotating currents in the rings, which generate their own flux to augment or oppose the incident field (depending on the SRR resonant characteristics). The field pattern is dipolar. The narrow gaps between the rings provide high capacitance values, lowering the resonant frequency. As a result, the structure has modest dimensions when compared to the resonant wavelength. This leads in reduced radiative losses and extremely high quality factors.


A single cell SRR has a pair of enclosed loops with splits in them at opposite ends. The loops are made of nonmagnetic metal like copper and have a small gap between them. The loops can be concentric or square, and gapped as needed.

  • Design: An SRR typically consists of one or more concentric metallic rings with a small gap (split) in each ring. The split introduces a discontinuity in the ring, which allows it to exhibit resonant behavior.
  • Shape: Common shapes include circular, square, and rectangular rings. The dimensions and geometry of the rings and gaps are critical in determining the resonant frequency and other electromagnetic properties.


  • Resonance: When exposed to an electromagnetic field, SRRs can resonate at specific frequencies. This resonance occurs because the split in the ring allows for the generation of strong local magnetic fields, which can store and release electromagnetic energy.
  • Magnetic Response: SRRs can be designed to have a magnetic response at particular frequencies, enabling negative permeability and contributing to the creation of negative index metamaterials.
  • Electric Response: In addition to magnetic responses, SRRs can also exhibit electric responses, particularly when combined with other structures, leading to complex permittivity and permeability profiles.


  • Metamaterials: SRRs are foundational elements in the design of metamaterials, which are engineered to have properties not typically found in nature, such as negative refractive index, superlensing, and cloaking.
  • Filters and Antennas: SRRs are used in the design of frequency-selective surfaces, bandpass filters, and compact antennas, improving their performance and miniaturization.
  • Sensors: Due to their sensitivity to changes in the surrounding environment, SRRs are used in sensing applications, such as detecting changes in permittivity or permeability of materials.