High Sensitivity Terahertz Receivers Based on Plasmonic Photoconductors

Speaker: Ning Wang
Affiliation: UCLA Ph.D. candidate

Advisor:  Prof. Mona Jarrahi

Abstract: Terahertz radiation can offer unique functionalities in a wide range of applications including medical imaging, biosensing, industrial quality control, security screening, etc.; however, high power terahertz transmitters and high sensitivity terahertz receivers are necessary for practical feasibility of these applications. This talk is focused on new types of high sensitivity terahertz receivers based on plasmonic photoconductors. The first category is plasmonic photoconductive terahertz receivers used for pulsed terahertz detection in time-domain terahertz spectroscopy systems. We demonstrate that incorporating plasmonic contact electrodes in photoconductive terahertz detectors can significantly enhance light concentration inside the device active area, leading to more than one order of magnitude higher terahertz detection sensitivities. The second category is plasmonic heterodyne terahertz receivers, which eliminate the need for terahertz local oscillators and Schottky/SIS/HEB mixers used in conventional heterodyne terahertz receivers. We demonstrate that utilizing a plasmonic photomixer pumped by a heterodyning optical beam can offer a significant increase in terahertz detection sensitivity, bandwidth, and dynamic range.

Biography: Ning Wang received her B.S. in electrical engineering from Beijing Institute of Technology, China in 2010 and started her Ph.D. study at University of Michigan, Ann Arbor after that. Her research is focused on developing high sensitivity terahertz receivers. She has successfully demonstrated significant sensitivity enhancement in photoconductive terahertz receivers in pulsed operation by using plasmonic contact electrodes and significant dynamic range enhancement in heterodyne terahertz receivers in continuous wave operation by using plasmonic photomixers.

Date(s) - Dec 02, 2015
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

E-IV Tesla Room #53-125
420 Westwood Plaza - 5th Flr., Los Angeles CA 90095