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Better vibrations: nonlinear sound-light interactions in semiconductor chips

Funding: 2016: $26,406
2017: $26,406
2018: $26,406

Project Member(s): Poulton, C.

Funding or Partner Organisation: Australian Research Council (ARC Discovery Projects)

Start year: 2016

Summary: Combining new concepts in the theory of nonlinear optics with advanced experiments, this project aims to develop smart waveguides that bind sound and light tightly together. Laser light and sound waves seem worlds apart, but in the right conditions we can make them interact: sound can change the colour of light. Harnessing this control of light in tiny waveguides on semiconductor chips would enable the development of unique and useful optical devices, but trapping sound in chips is tremendously difficult. By exploiting untapped material properties, the project seeks to break limits on the freedom and strength of interactions between light and sound. Project outcomes may establish a new class of optical chips for optical sensing and analysis in fields from security to communications to the biosciences.


Schmidt, MK, Poulton, CG, Mashanovich, GZ, Reed, GT, Eggleton, BJ & Steel, MJ 2019, 'Suspended mid-infrared waveguides for Stimulated Brillouin Scattering', Optics Express, vol. 27, no. 4, pp. 4976-4976.
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Smith, MJA, Wolff, C, Poulton, CG & Martijn de Sterke, C 2019, 'Stimulated Brillouin scattering in layered media: nanoscale enhancement of silicon', Optics Letters, vol. 44, no. 6, pp. 1407-1407.
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Schmidt, MK, Helt, LG, Poulton, CG & Steel, MJ 2018, 'Elastic Purcell Effect', Physical Review Letters, vol. 121, no. 6, pp. 064301-064301.
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FOR Codes: Photonics, Optoelectronics and Optical Communications, Expanding Knowledge in the Physical Sciences, Photonics, optoelectronics and optical communications