Lasers and Optics
Soon-to-be most powerful laser in the US is open for experimentsThe NSF-supported facility at U-M is about to begin welcoming researchers to study extreme physics that could advance medicine, microelectronics and more.
First light soon at the most powerful laser in the USThe ZEUS laser at the University of Michigan has begun its commissioning experiments
ZEUS Joins International Community of Extreme Light VirtuososAs a member of the X-lites program, ZEUS joins an international community of extreme light labs working together to advance laser science for the benefit of society
Lauren Cooper awarded Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship from SPIECooper, an ECE PhD student, works to advance fiber lasers, which could help provide the bursts for next-generation particle accelerators and advance attosecond science.
Emulating impossible “unipolar” laser pulses paves the way for processing quantum informationQuantum materials emit light as though it were only a positive pulse, rather than a positive-negative oscillation.
Louise Willingale named Kavli Fellow by the National Academy of SciencesWillingale was a featured speaker at the 2022 Kavli Frontiers of Science U.S. Symposium, where she presented on high intensity lasers, including ZEUS.
Dr. Donnell Walton honored with the 2021 ECE Willie Hobbs Moore Distinguished LectureshipWalton spoke about his career path and his current role as the director of the Corning Technology Center Silicon Valley.
Lauren Cooper awarded Department of Energy Fellowship for her work on ultra-short pulse fiber lasersCooper’s research is focused on nonlinear coherent pulse stacking, a method of generating pulses with energies and pulse durations suitable for particle accelerators and attosecond science.
Herbert Winful receives University Diversity and Social Transformation Professorship
Winful is recognized for promoting the university’s goals around diversity, equity and inclusion.
Herbert Winful awarded the 2021 Harold R. Johnson Diversity Service Award
Winful is recognized for his decades of outstanding leadership and commitment to developing a culturally and ethnically diverse University of Michigan community.
Anatoly Maksimchuk recognized for his achievements in high-intensity lasers and laser-plasma interactionBuilding on decades of groundbreaking research, Maksimchuk is a key member of the team building the $20M laser facility known as ZEUS
DYNAMO achieves first observation of the “charge separation effect”
Research led by Prof. Stephen Rand, Director of the Center for Dynamic Magneto-optics (DYNAMO), has important potential for energy conversion, ultrafast switching, nanophotonics, and nonlinear optics.
Mapping quantum structures with light to unlock their capabilities
Rather than installing new “2D” semiconductors in devices to see what they can do, this new method puts them through their paces with lasers and light detectors.
The Future of LasersA research profile of Prof. Gérard Mourou and other ECE scientists talks about the future of lasers, from transmuting nuclear waste to shooting space junk.
PhD student Laura Andre is awarded Optics and Photonics Education Scholarship from SPIE
Andre was chosen for her outstanding research and commitment to outreach activities.
Improved neural probe can pose precise questions without losing parts of the answers
It will now be possible to study brain activity when timing is important, such as the consolidation of memory.
Herbert Winful named Joseph E. and Anne P. Rowe Professor of Electrical Engineering
Winful has made fundamental contributions to nonlinear optics and the physics of tunneling, while also championing an inclusive department.
Alumna Prof. Adrienne Stiff-Roberts honored with the Willie Hobbs Moore Distinguished Lectureship
The Duke University Professor delivered a virtual talk on enabling hybrid thin films for optoelectronics and shared her memories of Michigan.
Optics Society wins Elaine Harden Award from College of Engineering
From outreach programs for local kids to events that bring the U-M Engineering community together, the Optics Society exemplifies leadership and service.
John Nees wins Research Scientist Award from the College of Engineering
Nees is honored for his excellence in research and scholarship, as well as his distinguished career as a key member of the Center for Ultrafast Optical Science.
Toward a portable concussion detector that relies on an infrared laser
By looking at tissue oxygen and cell metabolism at the same time, doctors could have a fast and noninvasive way to monitor the health of brain cells.
A 3D camera for safer autonomy and advanced biomedical imaging
Researchers demonstrated the use of stacked, transparent graphene photodetectors combined with image processing algorithms to produce 3D images and range detection.
Nobel Prize winners talk research, Nobel ceremony, and are remembered by U-M colleagues
From rubbing elbows with royalty to finding yourself a casual seatmate to a member of U2, Professor Emeritus Gérard Mourou, Prof. Donna Strickland, and their former U-M colleagues shared their experiences and reflections on the 2018 Nobel Prize ceremony.
U-M to become Mount Olympus with ZEUS, the most powerful laser to be built in the U.S.
The three-petawatt system could unlock secrets of the universe, advance cancer treatments, improve security screenings for nuclear threats, and much more.
Most powerful laser in the US to be built at MichiganUsing extreme light to explore quantum dynamics, advance medicine and more.
Beyond Apollo 11: U-M ECE’s role in advancing space exploration
For the 50th anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing, U-M ECE takes a look back – and a look forward – to how our professors, students, and alums have made their mark on the field.
Prof. Winick retires, leaving a legacy that empowers students to seek life and learning outside of the lab
For the past 31 years, Prof. Winick has helped define undergraduate courses and curriculum both at U-M and abroad while inspiring all to engineer their future by understanding the past.
Kirigami can spin terahertz rays in real time to peer into biological tissue
The rays used by airport scanners might have a future in medical imaging.
Prof. Louise Willingale creates extreme plasma conditions using high-intensity laser pulses
Willingale’s research in plasma physics advances many research areas from spectacular astrophysical phenomena to cancer treatment to fusion power.
2018 Nobel Prize Laureate Gérard Mourou talks high-intensity optics
Gérard Mourou, Professor Emeritus of EECS, returned to campus to discuss winning the Nobel Prize and his work in high-intensity optics.
Extreme light: Nobel laureate discusses the past & future of lasers
Lasers of tomorrow might neutralize nuclear waste, clean up space junk and advance proton therapy to treat cancer, says Gerard Mourou.
ECE student Brandon Russell explores space phenomena in a lab
PhD student Brandon Russell is awarded the Rackham International Student Fellowship for his research on magnetic fields in high-energy plasmas, which could help advance the development of clean energy and our understanding of energetic astrophysical phenomena.
Pallab Bhattacharya to receive 2019 IEEE Jun-ichi Nishizawa Medal
Bhattacharya honored for the development and commercialization of quantum dot lasers.
$6.8M initiative to enable American laser renaissance
After Europe and Asia surpassed U.S. in high intensity laser research in the early 2000s, the Department of Energy is funding new collaborative research network to make the U.S. more competitive.
Prof. Mackillo Kira Elected OSA Fellow for contributions to quantum optics
Kira was recognized for his pioneering contributions to the theory of semiconductor quantum optics.
Nobel Prize for ‘the most powerful laser pulses known to humanity’
At U-M, Gérard Mourou advanced ‘chirped pulse amplification,’ leading to more precise LASIK eye surgery and pushing the limits of optical science.
Light could make semiconductor computers a million times faster or even go quantum
Electron states in a semiconductor, set and changed with pulses of light, could be the 0 and 1 of future “lightwave” electronics or room-temperature quantum computers.
Louise Willingale advancing scientific knowledge of plasmas
Using some of the best lasers in the world, Willingale is shedding light on the impact of solar events on Earth.
A shoe-box-sized chemical detector
Powered by a broadband infrared laser, the device can zero in on the ‘spectral fingerprint region’.
Laser cooling with Laura Andre
Laura Andre says she “ended up just falling in love with optics.”
Cooling off with lasers
Lasers are typically thought of as hot. What if they were able to cool?
Doubling the power of the world’s most intense laser
It could enable tabletop particle and X-ray sources as well as the investigation of astrophysics and quantum dynamics.
John Nees elected OSA Fellow
Nees recognized for work with ultrafast lasers
Almantas Galvanauskas elected OSA Fellow
Prof. Galvanauskas was recognized for his pioneering work with fiber lasers.
Seeing through materials
By developing a fast algorithm to map out the paths light takes through yogurt, researchers aim to someday see through skin.
U-M Optics researchers sponsor Optics and Photonics Industry Snapshot
The Optics and Photonics event showed a thriving industry in SE Michigan
Ultrashort light pulses for fast “lightwave” computers
Extremely short, configurable “femtosecond” pulses of light demonstrated by an international team could lead to future computers that run up to 100,000 times faster than today’s electronics.
Herb Winful – professor of optics, friend of the arts
Winful discusses life in education
Alum Michelle Stock elected SPIE Fellow for development of the photonics industry
SPIE chose Stock for her achievements in business development and science policy
Prof. Zetian Mi elected SPIE Fellow for contributions to photonic devices and artificial photosynthesis
Prof. Mi conducts research in the area of semiconductor optoelectronics, specifically in the areas of III-nitride semiconductors, low dimensional nanostructures, LEDs, lasers, Si photonics, artificial photosynthesis and solar fuels.
CUOS: Pushing the limits of optical science
This national center, established in 1990, confirmed Michigan’s leadership in the field.
Parag Deotare receives AFOSR Award for research in Nanoscale Exciton-Mechanical Systems (NEXMS)
Prof. Deotare’s work will deepen our understanding of the underlying physics of exciton-mechanics interactions and help engineer novel devices for energy harvesting and up-conversion.
A better 3D camera with clear, graphene light detectors
While 3D films are currently made using multiple cameras to reconstruct each frame, this new type of camera could record in 3D on its own.
Gift launches M. Alten Gilleo distinguished lecture series in optical sciences and optoelectronics
Somin Lee receives AFOSR Young Investigator Award for research in bioplasmonics
The award supports research that will help our understanding of how tissues form distinct shapes and structure to become organs, such as lungs, salivary glands, and mammary glands.
Prof. Anthony Grbic elected IEEE Fellow for contributions to the theory and design of electromagnetic metamaterials
Prof. Grbic specializes in the broad fields of electromagnetics and optics, with interests ranging from fundamental electromagnetic theory to microwave circuits.
Glucose Monitoring with Lasers
Professor Islam is leading the reconstruction of super continuum lasers he designed to aid the military into a non-invasive tool to measure glucose in the blood system.
Michigan Light Project: Shining a light on optics
The MLP seeks to provide outreach and education about the world of optics in general, and the optics industry in Michigan specifically.
Next generation laser plasma accelerator
One of the most promising avenues for achieving new target levels of high peak intensity and high average power in an ultrafast laser system is to turn to fiber lasers.
ECE’s ideas worth spreading – TEDxUofM
Profs. Shai Revzen and Herbert Winful spoke about their passion for their work at the sixth annual conference, themed “Constructive Interference”.
Stephen Forrest receives 2015 Distinguished University Innovator Award
Prof. Forrest is widely acknowledged as one of the most successful academic inventors and entrepreneurs today.
Cheng Zhang awarded Rackham Predoctoral Fellowship for research on nanophotonic materials and devices
Cheng works with Prof. L. Jay Guo on research projects in the field of micro/nano-scale optical device physics and fabrication.
New approaches to solar cell technology featured in Sustainability Hour
The professors addressed two very different problems the industry faces with current technology.
Prof. Raj Nadakuditi awarded DARPA Young Faculty Award for research that could help reveal the brain’s secrets
His research will impact the ability to investigate the structure of brain circuits through the use of optical imaging techniques.
Mapping the brain with lasers
Yoon is leading a team that will design new light sources with lasers capable of zooming in on individual neuron circuits within the brain.
Live long and phosphor: Blue LED breakthrough for efficient electronics
Researchers at the University have extended the lifetime of blue organic light emitting diodes by a factor of ten.
Prof. Pallab Bhattacharya to receive 2015 IEEE David Sarnoff Award
Since coming to the University in 1984, Bhattacharya has pioneered several important technological advances.
Cheng Zhang receives Optical Sciences Scholarship
Cheng is a 4th year PhD candidate in Electrical Engineering working in field of micro/nano-scale optical device physics and fabrication.
Ted Norris receives Distinguished Faculty Achievement Award
Prof. Norris is an internationally recognized expert in the field of ultrafast optics.
ECE welcomes four new faculty for 2014-15 academic year
These faculty deepen ECE’s areas of expertise in computer vision, communications and information theory, environmental remote sensing, and laser-plasma interactions.
Shrinking the size of optical systems, exponentially
The researchers believe that metasurfaces could one day be used to completely control the phase, amplitude, and polarization of light.
Thomas Frost receives Best Paper Award for achieving a HQ QD red laser
Lasers emitting in the 600nm wavelength range have applications in medicine, optical information processing, optical storage, and more.
Celebrating Gérard Mourou: From ultrafast to extreme light
Mourou put the University on the map in ultrafast optics when he established the Center for Ultrafast Optical Science in 1991.
New research program to investigate optical energy conversion
The fundamental objective of the research initiative is to uncover, explain, and exploit dynamic magneto-optical processes and materials for new technological capabilities.
A new way to make laser-like beams using 250x less power
With precarious particles called polaritons that straddle the worlds of light and matter, University of Michigan researchers have demonstrated a new, practical and potentially more efficient way to make a coherent laser-like beam.
T-ray converts light to sound for weapons detection, medical imaging
U-M researchers demonstrated a unique terahertz detector and imaging system that could bridge the terahertz gap.
Student Spotlight: Elizabeth Dreyer – Ambassador for Optics
Elizabeth’s research is to understand how a new interaction between light and matter can generate electricity.
What are quantum computers going to do for us?
Michigan Engineering professor Duncan Steel explains how quantum computing works, using quantum bits that take on superpositions of 0 and 1 simultaneously.
Jun-Chieh Wang receives Best Oral Paper Award for plasma research
Wang’s research studies the glow-like atmospheric pressure microdischarges created under specialized conditions in laser printers.
New laser shows what substances are made of; could be new eyes for military
By shining the laser on a target and analyzing the reflected light, researchers can tell the chemical composition of the target.
A new laser paradigm: An electrically injected polariton laser
“It is no longer a scientific curiosity. It’s a real device.”
Using HERCULES to probe the interior of dense plasmas
Thanks to HERCULES, scientists are now able to study very dense plasmas — a crucial step in nuclear fusion and astrophysical research.
Super-fine sound beam could one day be an invisible scalpel
“We believe this could be used as an invisible knife for noninvasive surgery,” Guo said. “Nothing pokes into your body, just the ultrasound beam.”
Ted Norris named Gérard A. Mourou Professor of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
In the tradition of our best faculty at Michigan, Ted is a phenomenal teacher and mentor as well as researcher. Congratulations!
A new way to cool materials with light
The work advances the scientific understanding of laser cooling technologies currently being pursued to explore the boundary between classical and quantum physics.
Celebrating the birth of a new science
The discovery of nonlinear optics was just one of several Michigan “firsts” that occurred about fifty years ago, and underscores the importance of involving undergrads in research.
Nonlinear Optics at 50: A Symposium
As the birthplace of nonlinear optics, the University of Michigan is proud to host a symposium which will bring together some of the pioneers in the field.
Solar power without solar cells: A hidden magnetic effect of light could make it possible
This new technique could make solar power cheaper and, with improved materials, more efficient.
HERCULES laser rivals a synchrotron for short pulse x-ray beams
By using the wiggling motion of electrons in a plasma bubble generated by the ultrashort laser pulse, researchers produced X-rays comparable to that produced in a synchrotron facility.
Laser-based missile defense for helicopters being developedProtecting helicopters in combat from heat-seeking missiles is the goal of new laser technology created at the University of Michigan and Omni Sciences, Inc., which is a U-M spin-off company.
New work resolves long-standing questions about short pulses in quantum cascade lasers
Can the laser’s pulse propagate in such a way that it does not change its energy, and leaves the system in the excited state? Does the pulse speed up during propagation?
Organic laser breakthrough
The team is working toward building organic lasers that, like many inorganic lasers today, can be excited with electricity rather than light.
Tal Carmon receives Young Investigator Award for research in lasers and optics
The award will support Professor Carmon in three years of basic research on continuous on-chip extreme UV emitters.
Duncan Steel will advance quantum information processes in new MURI
Steel will concentrate his efforts on solid state systems, specifically with epitaxially grown InAs/lGaAs semiconductor quantum dots.
Ted Norris and CUOS: Reaching new frontiers in ultrafast optical science
Comprised of electrical engineers, astrophysicists, physicists, materials scientists, biomedical engineers, and doctors, CUOS explore ultrafast laser applications.
In tunneling physics, a decades-old paradox is resolved
Professor Winful sheds light on one of the most perplexing mysteries of quantum tunneling.
Gérard A. Mourou: In pursuit of new directions in science
“The future of CUOS is bright,” said Mourou. “Nothing will stop the flow of discoveries.”