Nanotechnology Now

Our NanoNews Digest Sponsors


Heifer International

Wikipedia Affiliate Button

Home > Press > Material Developed by UC San Diego Engineers Could Speed Up Underwater Communications by Orders of Magnitude

Electrical engineers at UC San Diego have demonstrated that artificial materials can significantly improve the speed of optical communications. The team showed that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light density and blink speed of a flourescent light-emitting dye molecule. Image credit: Liu Research Group/UC San Diego
Electrical engineers at UC San Diego have demonstrated that artificial materials can significantly improve the speed of optical communications. The team showed that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light density and blink speed of a flourescent light-emitting dye molecule.

Image credit: Liu Research Group/UC San Diego

Abstract:
University of California, San Diego electrical engineering professor Zhaowei Liu and colleagues have taken the first steps in a project to develop fast-blinking LED systems for underwater optical communications.

Material Developed by UC San Diego Engineers Could Speed Up Underwater Communications by Orders of Magnitude

San Diego, CA | Posted on January 24th, 2014

In a recent article in Nature Nanotechnology, Liu and colleagues show that an artificial metamaterial can increase the light intensity and "blink speed" of a fluorescent light-emitting dye molecule.

The nanopatterned layers of silver and silicon in the new material sped up the molecule's blink rate to 76 times faster than normal, while producing an 80-fold increase in its brightness.

"The major purpose of this program is to develop a better light source for communication purposes," Liu said. "But this is just a first step in the whole story. We have proved that this artificial, manmade material can be designed to enhance light emission and intensity, but the next step will be to apply this on conventional LEDs."

Extreme blinking speed - ultrafast modulation - in blue and green LEDs is a missing link that is necessary for increasing the rate at which information can be sent via optical channels through the open water, such as between ships and submarines, submarines and divers, underwater environmental sensors and unmanned underwater vehicles, or other combinations.

If dramatically improved, optical wireless communications could eventually replace underwater acoustic communications systems for short distance applications. Acoustic communications are limited by slow speed and low data rates and may possibly cause distress to whales, dolphins and other marine life. To do this, they must develop blue and green LED systems that blink one or two orders of magnitude faster than today's blue and green gallium nitride (GaN) based LEDs.

In underwater optical wireless communications systems, data is converted from an electrical signal to optical waves that travel through the water from a light source such as a LED to an optical receiver. Blinking blue and green LEDs are already used to transfer information through the water. (Blue and green LEDs are used because their light is less apt to be absorbed by the water than other colors.)

The metamaterials developed by the researchers are synthetic, with properties not found in nature, and are specially designed to accelerate the light generation process.

So far, it's been difficult to directly convert an electrical signal into an optical signal in LEDs with adequate speed. At the moment, the blink rate for most of these converted signals is less than one gigahertz, a rate slower than the speed of most WiFi signals, Liu said.

The materials are designed to have extremely strong interactions with the light emitters that are specific to the wavelength--or color--of the emissions. In the new report, the researchers used a dye molecule that gives off a yellow-green hue. So the next step will be to pair the materials with the blue and green LEDs.

"The design of the materials may not be the hardest thing," said UC San Diego graduate student Dylan Lu, the lead author of the Nature Nanotechnology paper, who noted that they will work with LEDs that have been manufactured to a specific industry standard. "I think the major challenge, to apply it to LEDs, will be an integration issue."

Liu recently won a grant from the Office of Naval Research (ONR) to develop the fast-blinking blue and green LED systems, which includes a little more than $500,000 over three years.

Along with Electrical and Computer Engineering professors Paul Yu and Eric Fullerton, Liu aims to eventually test ultrafast blinking LED configurations in San Diego's ocean waters.

"We started from advances in fundamental material research, and we want to transfer the knowledge to the LED business," said Liu.

####

For more information, please click here

Contacts:
Catherine Hockmuth

858-822-1359

Copyright © University of California - San Diego

If you have a comment, please Contact us.

Issuers of news releases, not 7th Wave, Inc. or Nanotechnology Now, are solely responsible for the accuracy of the content.

Bookmark:
Delicious Digg Newsvine Google Yahoo Reddit Magnoliacom Furl Facebook

Related Links

Liu Research Group:

More Electrical and Computer Engineering News Via RSS:

Related News Press

News and information

Ageing can drive progress: Population ageing is likely to boost medicine, nanotechnology and robotics, but increase political risks July 27th, 2016

WSU researchers 'watch' crystal structure change in real time: Breakthrough made possible by new Argonne facility July 27th, 2016

Enhancing molecular imaging with light: New technology platform increases spectroscopic resolution by 4 fold July 27th, 2016

New nontoxic process promises larger ultrathin sheets of 2-D nanomaterials July 27th, 2016

Wireless/telecommunications/RF/Antennas/Microwaves

Scientists move 1 step closer to creating an invisibility cloak July 15th, 2016

A little impurity makes nanolasers shine: ANU media release July 6th, 2016

Superheroes are real: Ultrasensitive nonlinear metamaterials for data transfer June 25th, 2016

Display technology/LEDs/SS Lighting/OLEDs

Researchers develop faster, precise silica coating process for quantum dot nanorods July 12th, 2016

Integrated trio of 2-D nanomaterials unlocks graphene electronics applications: Voltage-controlled oscillator developed at UC Riverside could be used in thousands of applications from computers to wearable technologies July 7th, 2016

Govt.-Legislation/Regulation/Funding/Policy

WSU researchers 'watch' crystal structure change in real time: Breakthrough made possible by new Argonne facility July 27th, 2016

Enhancing molecular imaging with light: New technology platform increases spectroscopic resolution by 4 fold July 27th, 2016

New nontoxic process promises larger ultrathin sheets of 2-D nanomaterials July 27th, 2016

Scientists test nanoparticle drug delivery in dogs with osteosarcoma July 26th, 2016

Discoveries

WSU researchers 'watch' crystal structure change in real time: Breakthrough made possible by new Argonne facility July 27th, 2016

Enhancing molecular imaging with light: New technology platform increases spectroscopic resolution by 4 fold July 27th, 2016

New nontoxic process promises larger ultrathin sheets of 2-D nanomaterials July 27th, 2016

Scientists test nanoparticle drug delivery in dogs with osteosarcoma July 26th, 2016

Announcements

Ageing can drive progress: Population ageing is likely to boost medicine, nanotechnology and robotics, but increase political risks July 27th, 2016

WSU researchers 'watch' crystal structure change in real time: Breakthrough made possible by new Argonne facility July 27th, 2016

Enhancing molecular imaging with light: New technology platform increases spectroscopic resolution by 4 fold July 27th, 2016

New nontoxic process promises larger ultrathin sheets of 2-D nanomaterials July 27th, 2016

Interviews/Book Reviews/Essays/Reports/Podcasts/Journals/White papers

Ageing can drive progress: Population ageing is likely to boost medicine, nanotechnology and robotics, but increase political risks July 27th, 2016

WSU researchers 'watch' crystal structure change in real time: Breakthrough made possible by new Argonne facility July 27th, 2016

New nontoxic process promises larger ultrathin sheets of 2-D nanomaterials July 27th, 2016

Ultrasensitive sensor using N-doped graphene July 26th, 2016

Military

Ultrasensitive sensor using N-doped graphene July 26th, 2016

Ultra-flat circuits will have unique properties: Rice University lab studies 2-D hybrids to see how they differ from common electronics July 25th, 2016

Borrowing from pastry chefs, engineers create nanolayered composites: Method to stack hundreds of nanoscale layers could open new vistas in materials science July 25th, 2016

Integration of novel materials with silicon chips makes new 'smart' devices possible July 25th, 2016

Grants/Awards/Scholarships/Gifts/Contests/Honors/Records

Scientists test nanoparticle drug delivery in dogs with osteosarcoma July 26th, 2016

Ultra-flat circuits will have unique properties: Rice University lab studies 2-D hybrids to see how they differ from common electronics July 25th, 2016

Accurate design of large icosahedral protein nanocages pushes bioengineering boundaries: Scientists used computational methods to build ten large, two-component, co-assembling icosahedral protein complexes the size of small virus coats July 25th, 2016

New reaction for the synthesis of nanostructures July 21st, 2016

Photonics/Optics/Lasers

Attosecond physics: Mapping electromagnetic waveforms July 25th, 2016

RMIT researchers make leap in measuring quantum states July 21st, 2016

The birth of quantum holography: Making holograms of single light particles! July 21st, 2016

Graphene photodetectors: Thinking outside the 2-D box July 21st, 2016

NanoNews-Digest
The latest news from around the world, FREE




  Premium Products
NanoNews-Custom
Only the news you want to read!
 Learn More
NanoTech-Transfer
University Technology Transfer & Patents
 Learn More
NanoStrategies
Full-service, expert consulting
 Learn More











ASP
Nanotechnology Now Featured Books




NNN

The Hunger Project







Car Brands
Buy website traffic