OQE Seminar

Wednesday, October 16, 2019

11:00 AM

Haus Room, 36–428


Quiet Light and Integrated Ultra-Narrow Linewidth SBS Lasers”


Daniel J. Blumenthal

Professor ECE

Director Terabit Optical Ethernet (TOEC) Center

University of California at Santa Barbara


Hosted by Professor Dirk Englund



Optical sources with near perfect linewidths and frequency stability approaching that of an atomic transition have ushered in the era of “quiet light.” These spectrally pure, ultra-stable sources serve as the heart of large-scale precision high-end scientific experiments used in time-keeping, positioning, quantum and spectroscopy, yet have been relegated to the table-top. In this talk the basics of quiet light, the limiting sources of noise and drift,  and how such light is measured and characterized will be briefly discussed. The generation and stabilization of quite light using a new class of chip-scale integrated Stimulated Brillouin Scattering (SBS) laser capable of sub-Hz fundamental linewidth emission and frequency reference cavities will be described. Reduction of the integral linewidth and laser stabilization close-to-carrier noise using miniature stabilization cavities will be described as will improving the long term frequency drift and fractional frequency stability to unprecedented levels for photonic integrated lasers. Applications of quiet light and these sources will be described including atomic cooling, ultra-low noise microwave generation and ARPA‑e funded FRESCO project energy efficient high capacity coherent communications project.


Daniel J. Blumenthal received the Ph.D. degree from the University of Colorado, Boulder (1993), the M.S.E.E. from Columbia University (1988) and the B.S.E.E from the University of Rochester (1981). He is a Professor in the Department of ECE at UCSB, Director of the Terabit Optical Ethernet Center (TOEC) and heads the Optical Communications and Photonics Integration (OCPI) group (ocpi.ece.ucsb.edu). Dr. Blumenthal is Co-Founder of Packet Photonics Inc. and Calient Networks and 23 patents. He has published over 460 papers in the areas of optical communications, ultra-narrow linewidth integrated lasers, optical gyros, InP  and ultra-low loss silicon nitride waveguide photonic integration, nano-photonic devices and microwave photonics. He is co-author of Tunable Laser Diodes and Related Optical Sources (New York: IEEE–Wiley, 2005) and has published in the Proceedings of the IEEE.

Dr. Blumenthal is a Fellow of the National Academy of Inventors (NAI) and a Fellow of the IEEE and Optical Society of America. He has served on the Board of Directors for National LambdaRail (NLR) and as an elected member of the Internet2 Architecture Advisory Council. He is recipient of a Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), a National Science Foundation Young Investigator Award (NYI) and an Office of Naval Research Young Investigator Program (YIP) Award and has served on numerous program committees including OFC, Photonics in Switching and as guest editor of multiple IEEE Journal special issues.