To date, CMOS processes and materials such as silicon and silicon have mainly been exploited for telecommunication applications by virtue of mature fabrication technologies and ease of integration with electronics. However, it has recently identified that the same materials and processes may be leveraged for optical applications in the mid to long infrared wavelength regimes as well. The key benefits would be large scale miniaturisation of optical systems over their classical bulk optics counterparts.

Mid-IR components are slated to provide the next wave of chip-scale optical systems. In this wavelength window, sensing applications are of great interest – a number of substances strongly absorb certain wavelengths at the Mid-IR, including pollutants and explosive components. Given the optical transparency of the atmosphere between 3 μm – 5 μm , mid-IR components and light sources provide an ideal platform for free space, long haul optical communications. In addition, mid-IR lasers are used for certain medical surgeries via laser ablation of tissue, particularly due to the tissues’ high water content which strongly absorbs at mid-IR wavelengths. The difficulty in executing these diverse applications is the lack of accessibility to mid-IR optical systems, which are conventionally assembled using bulk optics and are hence bulky. The goal of this work is to study mid-IR nanophotonic components which may then be used as fundamental building blocks of more complex optical systems.To date, CMOS processes and materials such as silicon and silicon have mainly been exploited for telecommunication applications by virtue of mature fabrication technologies and ease of integration with electronics. However, it has recently identified that the same materials and processes may be leveraged for optical applications in the mid to long infrared wavelength regimes as well. The key benefits would be large scale miniaturisation of optical systems over their classical bulk optics counterparts.

Mid-IR components are slated to provide the next wave of chip-scale optical systems. In this wavelength window, sensing applications are of great interest – a number of substances strongly absorb certain wavelengths at the Mid-IR, including pollutants and explosive components. Given the optical transparency of the atmosphere between 3 μm – 5 μm , mid-IR components and light sources provide an ideal platform for free space, long haul optical communications. In addition, mid-IR lasers are used for certain medical surgeries via laser ablation of tissue, particularly due to the tissues’ high water content which strongly absorbs at mid-IR wavelengths. The difficulty in executing these diverse applications is the lack of accessibility to mid-IR optical systems, which are conventionally assembled using bulk optics and are hence bulky. The goal of this work is to study mid-IR nanophotonic components which may then be used as fundamental building blocks of more complex optical systems.