The Physical Optics Group is led by Professor Peter Kazansky. Research activities in the group are focused on adventureous and potentially high impact research in optics, quantum and physical electronics.
Current research includes fundamental studies of poled glasses with large second-order nonlinearities, the creation of new glasses, optical fibres and waveguides with nonlinearity comparable with that in the best nonlinear crystals and development of practical devices such as all-fibre frequency doublers, parametric frequency converters, electro-optic modulators, switches and electric field sensors.
Another activity involves advanced photosensitivity and femtosecond direct writing of 3D photonic structures. Photonic structures patterned in three-dimensions providing entirely new functionalities offer tantalizing possibilities in the field of integrated optics, e.g. switches and compact delay lines and micro-optics, e.g. embedded diffractive optics arrays for interconnection and synthesis of light beams.
Current interests and future directions also include integrated quantum optic devices, such as atomic clocks, atom interferometers and quantum computers. The field of laser cooling and trapping atoms for cold atom optics promises numerous important applications and we are working to advance this technology and create a cold atom laboratory on a microchip.