Monday, April 26, 2021

Stanford develops device for fine tuning the frequencies of individual photons

Researchers at Stanford University have developed a new photonic architecture capable of fine-tuning the frequencies of each individual photon in a stream of light. Potential applications could include optical neural networks.

"The structure consists of a low-loss wire for light (the black line below) carrying a stream of photons that pass by like so many cars on a busy throughway. The photons then enter a series of rings (orange), like the off-ramps in a highway cloverleaf. Each ring has a modulator (EOM in green) that transforms the frequency of the passing photons – frequencies which our eyes see as color. There can be as many rings as necessary, and engineers can finely control the modulators to dial in the desired frequency transformation."

The research, which is led by Shanhui Fan, a professor of electrical engineering at Stanford, is published this month in Nature Communications.