, an associate professor of electrical and computer engineering renowned internationally for his work in semiconductor photonics, has recently earned additional recognition for his research.
Ooi, a faculty member with Lehigh’s Center for Optical Technologies
, has been elected a Fellow of the Institute of Physics for contributions to semiconductor photonics integration using quantum-well/dot intermixing.
The institute, headquartered in the United Kingdom, has a worldwide membership of more than 34,000.
Ooi has also received a three-year grant from the National Science Foundation
(NSF) to conduct research on broadband diode lasers.
Meanwhile, Ooi’s work was featured earlier this year in Compound Semiconductor
, a technical journal published by the Institute of Physics. An article titled “Dashes beat dots for high-power lasers” described Ooi’s collaboration with the Army Research Laboratory in Maryland and with IQE, a leading supplier of semiconductor wafer products. At Lehigh, Ooi and his group collaborate with James Hwang
, director of Lehigh’s Compound Semiconductor Technology Laboratory and a faculty member of the COT.
In that article, Ooi claims to have developed the first high-power broadband semiconductor laser that operates at 1.6 microns. Conventional quantum-well lasers emit at 1.55 microns, says Ooi, while “Lehigh’s quantum-dash laser displays significantly broader linewidth at comparable output power.”
Ooi’s laser is based on indium-phosphide (InP), says the article, and features indium-arsenide (InAs) quantum dashes. It has a center wavelength of 1.64 microns and a 76-nanometer wavelength range. (One micron is one one-millionth of a meter; one nm is one one-billionth of a meter.) The light sources show promise in gas detection and dental imaging as well as such military applications as range-finding and burst illumination imaging.
In the NSF project, Ooi and his team are developing a new class of ultra-broadband semiconductor lasers with a lasing bandwidth that spans multiple optical communications channels at a near-infrared wavelength. The laser, says Ooi, has potential applications for optical fiber communications, spectroscopy, sensing, metrology (measuring) and imaging.
Most existing ultra-broadband light sources are generated using optics and laser systems that are expensive and bulky, says Ooi. A conventional diode laser generally produces a narrow spectrum ranging in width from less than 1 nanometer to a few nm.
The laser proposed by Ooi is a compact, cost-effective and high-efficiency broadband diode laser that will produce about 100 times more spectral width than that produced by existing semiconductor lasers.
Ooi and his team successfully demonstrated their 1.64-micron-wavelength semiconductor laser earlier this year in Montreal at the IEEE-LEOS annual meeting, a major conference devoted to research in photonics and lasers. The work was also published in Applied Physics Letters