Photonic materials and devices
Photonic materials and the devices that can be made from them are essential to many areas of technology.
For instance, they are the basis of the telecommunications systems that brings phone, TV and internet signals to your home. They can now produce light so efficiently, it is revolutionising the cost of lighting and its impact on the environment. In the form of solar cells, they can be a source of clean and renewable energy, available to everyone all around the world.
In the future, new and improved photonic devices promise not only to enhance the performance of existing technologies but also enable new ones, such as quantum computers that outperform the best IT available today.
In photonic materials and devices, we study the next generation of photonic materials using the latest scientific methods in order to understand the underlying mechanisms by which they interact with light.
This understanding allows us to not only produce better photonic materials but also develop them into prototype devices. We use a wide range of spectroscopic and other techniques to probe the behaviour of these materials, enabled by a modern array of laser sources emitting from the THz to the UV spectral regions.
Currently, we are studying many of the newest and most technologically promising materials such as InGaN / GaN quantum wells, colloidal quantum dots, nanowires, graphene oxide and 2D MoS2.
The applications enabled by these materials, and the proto-type devices based on them, include brighter and more efficient lighting and displays, with better colour purity; cheap and easy-to-make solar cells and detectors; and technology the exploits the quantum nature of matter on the nano-scale.