PhD Proposal: Nina Chowdhary
TITLE: Investigation of the Optical Properties of Transition Metal Oxide Thin Films Grown by Atomic Layer Deposition
ABSTRACT: Light can carry information faster than electrical connections, making it attractive in chip form for novel devices. Combining electronics and photonic devices on a single chip would therefore provide a powerful approach to developing brand new technologies with diverse applications ranging from efficient solar technology to low power computing systems. The present-day state of the microelectronics industry limits greatly the type of materials that can be used in this process; only materials that are compatible with the current complementary metal-oxide-semiconductor (CMOS) technology qualify. Typically, CMOS technology utilizes bulk silicon substrates or silicon-on-insulator and the CMOS fabrication techniques include atomic layer deposition, chemical vapor deposition, and physical vapor deposition.
Third-order nonlinear materials are important not only in chip form but for military-grade applications such as optical limiting and frequency conversion. Conventional nonlinear materials, such as bulk crystals (KNbO_3) or liquids (CS_2), pose challenges for being integrated on the current silicon photonic platforms, so other solutions must be found. Transition metal oxides (TMO’s) are an interesting class of materials that may serve as a potential solution to the lack of CMOS-compatible materials. Some TMO’s are shown to have a large and fast third-order nonlinear optical response and can be easily incorporated into the CMOS production flow in the form of thin films. There is ongoing research being conducted and funded to understand the growth and influence of composition and structure on the optical properties (both linear and nonlinear) for transition metal oxide thin films that exhibit a large nonlinear optical response.
Proposal will be held using WebEx.