UTA’s Magnusson Awarded $360K NSF Grant for Photonic Lattices

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ARLINGTON, Texas, Nov. 26, 2018 — Robert Magnusson, the Texas Instruments Distinguished University Chair in Nanoelectronics and an electrical engineering professor at the University of Texas at Arlington (UTA), will use a $360,000 National Science Foundation (NSF) grant for researching band flips and bound states in leaky-mode resonant photonic lattices.

Like ordinary crystals, photonic lattices have an energy band structure with gaps of different widths. A bound state in the lattice means that light cannot escape the lattice, while a leaky mode allows the light to come through. When light shines on a lattice, it resonates with the leaky modes and reflects or transmits in a narrow band. The location of the resonance in the wavelength spectrum has intrinsic properties, and, fundamentally, there is a resonant leaky mode on one edge of the band but no radiation on the other. Recently, scientists have realized that the nonleaky edge is related to the bound state, which is one key point that Magnusson is investigating in the project.

Any discoveries Magnusson makes in the course of his research could potentially be used to create new low-power modulators for optical communications systems such as in the current internet or applied later in other devices as technology advances.

Published: November 2018
An SI prefix meaning one billionth (10-9). Nano can also be used to indicate the study of atoms, molecules and other structures and particles on the nanometer scale. Nano-optics (also referred to as nanophotonics), for example, is the study of how light and light-matter interactions behave on the nanometer scale. See nanophotonics.
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