A change of up to 40% of the relative transmission at the photonic bandgap edge has been observed in photoconductive inverted opals under ultraviolet laser irradiation. This effect has been related to the irradiation-stimulated change of the refraction index of the photonic crystal. The desorption (chemosorption) of oxygen molecules on the surface of the backbone leading to destruction (formation) of a depletion layer at the surface has been suggested as the mechanism responsible for the slow variation of polarizability of the inverted opal.
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