Ultrawide-bandgap semiconductors have an important role for many applications ranging from power electronics to photonics. The semiconductor material with the largest bandgap is aluminum nitride with a maximum bandgap of 6.28 eV, corresponding to a wavelength transparency extending to 197 nm. The large transparency window makes aluminum nitride a promising optical material for applications that span from the infrared to ultraviolet. Along with these properties, aluminum nitride is a non-centrosymmetric crystal allowing exploitation of the second order nonlinearity and the electro-optic effect. This thesis will cover the synthesis of the material, a number of characterization techniques that verify the quality of the material, and conclude with applications for the synthesized material.
To date we have demonstrated an ultrawide-bandgap semiconductor photonics platform based on nanocrystalline aluminum nitride (AlN) on sapphire. This photonics platform guides light at low loss from the ultraviolet (UV) to the visible spectrum, though is transparent from 200 -15,000 nm. We measured ring resonators with intrinsic quality factor (Q) exceeding 170,000 at 638 nm and Q >20,000 down to 369.5 nm, which shows a promising path for low-loss integrated photonics in UV and visible spectrum. The nonlinear, electro-optic, and piezo-electric properties of AlN make it a promising active material for controlling and connecting atomic and atom-like quantum memories, coherent qubit transduction, entangled photon generation, and frequency conversion.
Library of Congress Subject Headings
Wide gap semiconductors--Optical properties; Nonlinear optics; Semiconductors--Materials
Microelectronic Engineering (MS)
Department, Program, or Center
Fanto, Michael Larry, "Nonlinear Optics in Photonic Ultrawide-Bandgap Circuits" (2020). Thesis. Rochester Institute of Technology. Accessed from
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