Office of Research, Innovation & Commercialization (ORIC)

05 May, 2023

Two-Dimensional Material for Photonics & Laser Matter Interaction: Opening Door for Future Technologies

Photonics is the physical science of light waves. It deals with the science behind the generation, detection, and manipulation of light. Light has a dual nature known as the wave-particle duality. That is to say that light has characteristics of both a continuous electromagnetic wave and a particle (photon). Photonics plays an important role in driving innovation across an increasing number of fields. The application of photonics spreads across several sectors, from optical data communications to imaging, lighting and displays, to the manufacturing sector, to life sciences, health care, security, and safety.

Muhammad Haseeb Shakil

Muhammad Haseeb Shakil

Executive Research Operations (ORIC) The Superior University, Lahore

Dr. Shafique Ahmed

Manager Innovation & Commercialization (ORIC) The Superior University, Lahore

Two-Dimensional Material for Photonics & Laser Matter Interaction: Opening Door for Future Technologies

Using light instead of electricity, integrated photonic technology provides a solution to the limitations of electronics like integration and heat generation, taking devices to the next level, the so-called “more than Moore” concept to increase capacity and speed of data transmission. An integrated circuit containing electronic components that form a functional circuit, such as those embedded inside your smart phone, computer, and other electronic devices; a photonic integrated circuit (PIC) is a chip that contains photonic components, which are components that work with light (photons). With electronic integrated circuits arriving at the end of their integration capacity, PICs have the potential to be the preferred technology for data communications (inter- and intra-datacenter communications).

Due to abrupt development in neuromorphic circuits, artificial intelligence (AI) has gained more importance that strive to process brain energy efficiently. From data driven economy point of view, powerful computing systems are more important for hasty technological progress. However, due to high demanding computing power, there is a huge gap between existing and required technology and to overcome this gap non-volatile memory (NVM) based on magnetic tunnel junctions, resistive switches and phase change memory devices are necessary that are building blocks for neural networks implementation and required additional multi terminal device concept. Rapid growth in data transfer has marginally costs associated with complementary metal oxide semiconductor (CMOS) and von Neaman architecture and there is a need of technology that will play a vital role in future computing systems such that spintronics, memristive and Ultra-wide bandgap semiconductor (UWBG) and two dimensional (2D) materials-based electronics. Here are some examples of the device types that are emerging candidates to replace CMOS in specific applications.

  • Memristors
  • Nanoscale Vacuum Electronics
  • Neuromorphic Devices
  • Printed Electronics
  • Spintronic Devices
  • Graphene and 2D Material Electronics
  • Carbon Nanotube Electronics
  • Plasmonic Devices

Emerging research devices based on 2D materials are the future of CMOS industry and can bring a disaster change by replacing old technology. Deriving from their atomically thin structure, UWBG and 2D materials have superior optical, electrical, and mechanical properties that makes them forefront material in research. Hybrid devices and layer by layer materials have reached to limits and now they are replacing with 2D materials that promises a variety of new technologies that opened stimulating door for future technologies.

Wide bandgap semiconductors, especially GaN, are known as future Si of microelectronic Industry. Devices fabricated using SiC, GaN have superior performance, and both in DC, and AC domain compared to GaAs based devices. By using WBG based materials, a quality work can be done in the following areas:

  1. High-field laser physics
  2. Frequency combs
  3. Attosecond science
  4. Plasma-based laser accelerator schemes
  5. Laser acceleration in vacuum (ultrashort laser pulse interactions and crossed-beam geometries)
  6. Relativistic quantum dynamics

2D and WBG based materials has vast usage in different high power and high frequency applications. The major applications include:

  1. Wireless Communication, RADAR, etc.
  2. Microwave Circuits
  3. Power Amplifiers
  4. Attenuators/Mixers/Oscillators/LNA
  5. Power added efficiency >30%
  6. RF gain >10 dB
  7. Unity Gain Frequency, FT ~ 30 GHz

A project for developing a RF device using WBG and 2D based FET for high power applications is under process at the Superior University, Lahore. The proposed project has been designed to go through phases of experimentation, development, and implementation in a creative environment, so a close engagement with industrial partners is very likely. It will provide with a better CMOS technology perspective of the challenges. The research has following major objectives and scope:

  1. To develop the start of art robust method to predict the electrical and optical properties of the WBG and 2D based materials and comparison with existing techniques.
  2. To develop a model that can be generalized for a wide range of materials and system variables.
  3. To integrate the proposed model with some practical application.
  4. To transfer the technology from the lab to industrial partners
  5. To disseminate the research results to the scientific community, industrial partners, manufacturing companies, and policymakers

Societal Impact of Photonics

Photonic technologies enable sustainable, resource-efficient production processes. Modern lighting methods contribute to protecting the environment. Some societal Impacts are as follows:

  1. Immunity from electromagnetic interference (EMI)
  2. Freedom from electrical short circuits or ground loops
  3. Safety in combustible environment
  4. Security from monitoring
  5. Low-loss transmission
  6. Large bandwidth (i.e., multiplexing capability)
  7. Small size, light weight
  8. Inexpensive

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