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Aston appoints renowned photonics expert

Professor Misha Sumetsky

5 December 2013

Aston University have appointed a renowned expert in fibre optics and nanophotonics to strengthen its position as a world leader in photonics research and development. 

Professor Misha Sumetsky has joined the Aston Institute of Photonic Technologies (AIPT) to help develop next generation fibre optic devices for telecommunication, optical computing, and sensing. 

Professor Sumetsky, who previously worked at OFS Labs and Bell Labs in New Jersey, USA, has created and pioneered SNAP technology (Surface Nanoscale Axial Photonics). The system, which will be developed further with Aston’s team, uses small segments of optical fibres to fabricate miniature photonic devices with unprecedented sub-angstrom precision. These devices are predicted to have breakthrough applications in optical communications and computing.  

The Aston Institute of Photonic Technologies, with more than 70 active researchers, is the largest research group in the School of Engineering & Applied Science, and one of the largest in photonics research in the UK. The group pursues a diverse range of device-and-system-level topics at the leading edge of technology. 

It has recently successfully expanded its activities in a number of key areas including femtosecond pulsed laser techniques, medical sensing devices, and planar integrated optical circuits. The Institute maintains active and fertile collaborations with industrial companies and academic institutions throughout the world.  

Professor Sumetsky said; “My experiments to reduce transmission loss and increase fabrication precision of  miniature photonic devices  led to creation of novel SNAP technology which enables the fabrication of photonic devices with the precision 100 times better than that achieved previously. 

“At the same time, the transmission loss of these devices is 100 times smaller. The new technology will allow us to create miniature optical devices with outstanding performance which promise breakthrough applications in telecommunications and optical computing.”  

I’m delighted to have joined the AIPT and to be combining my research alongside the existing knowledge of this world leading photonics team

He added; “I’m delighted to have joined the AIPT and to be combining my research alongside the existing knowledge of this world leading photonics team. It’s a very nice environment here and I’m thrilled to work with them.” 

Aston Institute of Photonics Director Professor Sergei Turitsyn added; “We are delighted to welcome Professor Sumetsky to the Institute. He is very highly regarded and brings a wealth of experience. It will be exciting to see how he will pursue his research interests in optics of microresonators, micro and nanofibers, and nanophotonics while developing ‘SNAP’ technology.” 

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For further media information, please contact Jonathan Garbett, Aston University Communications on 0121 204 4552 or j.garbett@aston.ac.uk