26 January 2018
CST Global profiles CoolBlue and MacV quantum technology development projects at Photonics West
© Semiconductor Today Magazine / Juno PublishiPicture: Disco’s DAL7440 KABRA laser saw.
At SPIE Photonics West 2018 in San Francisco (27 January - 1 February), III-V optoelectronic foundry Compound Semiconductor Technologies Global Ltd (CST Global) of Hamilton International Technology Park, Blantyre, near Glasgow, Scotland, UK (a subsidiary of Sweden’s Sivers IMA Holdings AB) is giving an update on two of its government-funded quantum technology development projects.
‘CoolBlue’ is developing next-generation distributed feedback (DFB) gallium nitride (GaN) laser diodes for quantum sensing systems, and Dr Thomas Slight is presenting a paper on the project’s findings at the conference. The project ‘MacV’ (VCSELs for miniature atomic clocks) is developing a commercially viable mass-produced coherent population trapping (CPT)-based miniature quantum atomic clock, for submarine or military applications (where a GPS signal is not available). MacV is very relevant to attendees and has many other potential market applications, says CST Global.
“CPT-based miniature atomic clocks require extremely stable single-mode laser diodes for direct modulation at the resonant frequency of the gas cell,” says research engineer Dr Iain Eddie, MacV project leader at CST Global. “The MacV VCSELs (vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers) will provide low power consumption, stable wavelength, high reliability and a small footprint,” he adds. “A volume-produced VCSEL source with these specific characteristics is not currently manufactured in the UK and there are potential applications for chip-scale atomic clocks worldwide. This gives the MacV project participants, and the UK, a strategic and commercial opportunity in the emerging atomic clock market.”
The MacV project runs from March 2017 until February 2019, and has a budget of £1,234,392, including a government funding contribution of £705,287. CST Global is a participant member of the project and will receive £202,056. Cardiff University and NPL Management Ltd are also participant members, with Cardiff-based Compound Semiconductor Centre Ltd as lead participant.