Opening up the electromagnetic spectrum

New parity time symmetric system opens up range of wavelengths to researchers, engineers

Researchers from the labs of Lan Yang, the Edwin H. & Florence G. Skinner Professor, and Xuan “Silvia” Zhang, associate professor, at the McKelvey School of Engineering at Washington University in St. Louis, have developed the first fully integrated parity-time symmetric electronic system.

Headshots of Lan Yang and Xuan 'Silvia' Zhang
Yang (left) and Zhang

And it can be made without the use of exotic materials, only requiring the same standard microelectronic fabrication technology used today for common integrated circuits.

The research was published March 17 in the journal Nature Nanotechnology.

PT-symmetric systems allow for energy flow to be manipulated in surprising new ways. Currently, they can operate in a limited range — either at the extremely low-frequency acoustic domain or the extremely high-frequency optical domain.

This new technology implemented a concept with remarkable mathematical properties originating from quantum physics into an integrated circuit. It opens up a new part of the spectrum for research in the giga- to terahertz range.

Examples of different types of symmetry. (Image: Murch laboratory)

Read more on the engineering website.

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