The project in which the ASU team is involved is the only one selected this year in the area of laser and photodetector materials research.
"This indicates national recognition of the research efforts at ASU in these areas," Zhang says.
"I'm very pleased to see our team selected, because competition for this particular MURI grant was very strong," Zhang says. "Many of the teams competing are led by outstanding scientists."
Zhang, Smith and Johnson will strive to better understand and improve the physical and structural properties of antimonide-based compound semiconductor materials. Those materials offer the potential to produce very high-performance infrared photodetectors and lasers, Johnson says.
Specifically, they'll study superlattice systems that consist of two or more materials that are intentionally arranged in alternating semiconductor layers several nanometers thick.
The superlattice structures combined with an antimonide material system can give engineers "additional degrees of freedom when selecting for color and performance in infrared photodetectors and lasers," Johnson explains.
The ASU team has a strong track record in this area. Zhang did pioneering work on superlattices for infrared laser applications while at the prominent Hughes Research Laboratories, and has been collaborating with Johnson and Smith on this research since he joined ASU in 1996. Smith has decades of experience studying structural properties of semiconductor superlattices.
|Contact: Joe Kullman|
Arizona State University