Associate 2000-01

Milton Feng

Electrical & Computer Engineering

Feng imageTheory and Technology Realization of Transistor Laser

The invention of the transistor in 1947 laid the foundation of the modern semiconductor industry and enabled applications such as computing, high-speed communication systems, defense technologies, and modern navigation techniques. More than five decades later, Professor Feng’s research group has developed the transistor laser, with demonstrated modulation speeds ~10 orders of magnitude faster than the existing semiconductor diode laser.

Furthermore, the transistor laser is the first device that can produce simultaneously an optical and electrical output in response to an input signal. Its invention holds the promise of bridging applications in microelectronics and optoelectronics, two fields that have been pursued independently for lack of a suitable common technology platform. The transistor laser also possesses a multitude of high-speed signal-processing capabilities that have not been possible previously.

During his Center appointment, Professor Feng will focus on developing the theoretical understanding of the physics of the transistor laser. He will first consider photon-carrier interaction and carrier dynamics solved with the boundary conditions set by the transistor laser’s structure, aiming for a comprehensive theoretical framework. He will then develop computational models and design experiments to verify the theory. Ultimately his group will simulate the transistor laser’s performance for new functionality under practical conditions, such as the presence of electrical parasitics and high temperatures.