New Frontiers in Terahertz Technology
Date of original webcast: Tuesday, January 10, 2017
Duration: 59 minutes
Although unique potentials of terahertz waves for chemical identification, material characterization, biological sensing, and medical imaging have been recognized for quite a while, the relatively poor performance, higher costs, and bulky nature of current terahertz systems continue to impede their deployment in field settings. This presentation describes recent results on developing fundamentally new terahertz electronic/optoelectronic components and imaging/spectrometry architectures to mitigate performance limitations of existing terahertz systems.
- New designs of high-performance photoconductive terahertz sources utilize plasmonic antennas to offer terahertz radiation at record-high power levels of several milliwatts — demonstrating more than three orders of magnitude increase compared to the state of the art.
- Unique capabilities of these plasmonic antennas can be further extended to develop terahertz detectors and heterodyne spectrometers with single-photon detection sensitivities over a broad terahertz bandwidth at room temperatures, which has not been possible through existing technologies.
- Plasmonic antennas and device architectures are optimized for operation at telecommunication wavelengths, where very high power, narrow linewidth, wavelength tunable, compact and cost-effective optical sources are commercially available.
- Compact and low-cost terahertz sources, detectors, and spectrometers could offer numerous opportunities e.g., medical imaging and diagnostics, atmospheric sensing, pharmaceutical quality control, and security screening systems.
- Research activities advance new types of high-performance terahertz passive components (e.g., modulators, tunable filters, and beam deflectors) based on novel reconfigurable meta-films.
Mona Jarrahi received her B.S. degree in Electrical Engineering from Sharif University of Technology in 2000 and her M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Electrical Engineering from Stanford University in 2003 and 2007.
Michael C. Hamilton
Dr. Michael C. Hamilton is an Associate Professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at Auburn University and the Assistant Director of the Alabama Microelectronics Science and Technology Center.