The polarization state of light is a crucial parameter in fiber optic networks. However, polarization control of light from the semiconductor lasers ubiquitous in the telecom industry is notoriously difficult, and typically involves bulky, delicate, and expensive optical components. In this technology, metallic gratings combined with nanoscale apertures are patterned directly onto the emission facet of a laser. The solution is more robust, smaller, and cheaper than alternative approaches. Moreover, it can be tuned to function effectively over a wide spectral range, from communication wavelengths to the mid-infrared and terahertz spectrum.
Intellectual Property Status: U.S. Patent(s) Issued: 8,552,410; 8,723,145