The Slimmest Optical Amplifier Ever Produced
A Study from the Politecnico di Milano Published in “Nature Photonics”
A study conducted by the Politecnico di Milano, the CNR (The National Research Council), the University of Aquila, and New York’s Columbia University regarding the slimmest optical amplifier ever obtained to increase laser light intensity has been published in the prestigious journal “Nature Photonics”.
The amplifier has a width inferior to one millionth of a millimetre and promises to reinvent the world of photonics with increasingly compact and slimmer devices.
We’ve created the slimmest optical amplifier ever with a width of three atomic layers, and as a result we’ve reached an extreme level of physics
explains the study’s lead author Chiara Trovatello of the Politecnico di Milano’s Physics Department.
Until recently, optical amplifiers have been created using crystals with a few millimetres’ minium thickness. However, with this study researchers demonstrate how the precise optical properties of a bi-dimensional semiconductor material allow for the creation of an optical amplifier less than one millionth of a millimetre (one nanometre) in width.
Lasers have revolutionised daily life in many ways and are based on the capacity to amplify light through appropriate active mediums thereby increasing its intensity”, continues Trovatello. “Optical amplifiers have been created using a wide range of materials, from gas to liquids to solids, all at a macroscopic scale, however. The trend towards miniaturisation that’s been dominating the world of electronics allows for the production of the devices we use, such as smartphones and tablets. Now, this trend is extending towards the world of lasers and their applications that make up the world of photonics. It is therefore important to create optical amplifiers of increasingly smaller sizes