Efficient Terahertz Sources Based on Difference-Frequency Generation in Triply-Resonant Photonic Resonators

Technology #13834

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FIGS. 1A-1B are schematic diagrams of two alternative configurations of the inventionFIGS. 1A-1B are schematic diagrams of two alternative configurations of the inventionFIGS. 2A-2C are schematic diagrams illustrating the first physical implementation for efficient THz generationFIGS. 2A-2C are schematic diagrams illustrating the first physical implementation for efficient THz generationFIGS. 2A-2C are schematic diagrams illustrating the first physical implementation for efficient THz generationFIG. 3A-3D are schematic diagrams illustrating the second physical implementation for efficient THz generationFIG. 3A-3D are schematic diagrams illustrating the second physical implementation for efficient THz generation
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Inventors
Professor Marin Soljacic
Department of Physics, MIT
External Link (www.mit.edu)
Professor John Joannopoulos
Institute for Soldier Nanotechnologies, MIT
External Link (ab-initio.mit.edu)
Professor Steven Johnson
Department of Mathematics, MIT
External Link (math.mit.edu)
Alejandro Rodriguez
Jorge Bravo-Abad
Harvard University
Ian Burgess
Harvard University
Marco Loncar
Harvard University
Murray McCutcheon
Harvard University
Yinan Zhang
Harvard University
Managed By
Jim Freedman
MIT Technology Licensing Officer - Chemicals, Instruments, Consumer Products
Patent Protection

Efficient terahertz sources based on difference-frequency generation in triply-resonant photonic resonators

US Patent 8,285,091

Applications

Applications for this technology span a variety of industries that would benefit from having a small-footprint and efficient THz source operating at room temperature, including non-destructive material characterization, biology and medical imaging, environmental monitoring, homeland security (security screening), and ultrafast computing.

Problem Addressed

The current technologies are not as adept in conversion at low powers.  Nor do they produce THz radiation efficiently. Current technologies for efficient THz generation require either operation at cryogenic temperature or, if one needs to operate at room temperature, intricate set-ups and powerful lasers (both possibilities lead to not practical and not compact THz sources).

Technology

The invention is a system for efficient terahertz (THz) generation based on difference-frequency generation in a triply-resonant photonic resonator. The system includes a photonic resonator comprising at least one nonlinear material that enables THz generation via difference-frequency generation (DFG) of two near-infrared (NIR) or optical beams.  This photonic resonator is coupled evanescently to at least one NIT or optical waveguide and is embedded or placed in the proximity of a second photonic resonator, whose resonant frequency is in the THz waveguide.

Advantages

  • Allows for efficient cavity-enhanced nonlinear frequency conversion at increasingly low powers
  • Provides a THz source that, while being compact and efficient, can operate at room temperature (i.e., it meets all the requirements of a truly practical THz source)
  • The THz source has the potential of enabling a broader use of THz radiation