Institute for Modern Optics - Research Areas

Laser interferometry for gravitational wave detection

Dr. Peter Beyersdorf is currently developing techniques in laser interferometry that allow for detection sensitivity beyond the standard quantum limit. This has applications in gravitational wave detection, and will allow detectors such as LIGO, the laser interfereomtric gravitational wave observatory, to probe exotic sources of gravitational radiation such as black-holes, the big bang, and supernova.


High-Field Laser-Matter Interactions

Dr. Ken Wharton is pursuing research, in collaboration with Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, on the interaction of intense laser fields with matter. Specific research projects include the relevant interaction of laser prepulses with solid targets, synchrotron radiation produced by electrons in ultraintense circularly-polarized laser fields, and the development of sub-picosecond xray sources using laser-solid interactions.


Holographic Optical Instrumentation

Dr. Ramen Bahuguna is doing research in the areas of optical instrumentation, holography and optical fingerprint sensors. He is currently developing optical techniques for sensing fingerprints based on total internal reflection; some of them involve holographic optical elements, others a combination of optical principles. The goal is to build a miniature sensor. Several of his results on fingerprint sensors have been patented. Few of them have resulted in a product of a company.