We are investigating new physical phenomena caused by the interaction of light with nano- and micro-scale ultra-fine artificial structures fabricated by state-of-the-art microfabrication techniques, and their application to optical control. Furthermore, based on condensed matter physics, we are exploring the scientific principles of laser processing to understand why light can break things, and are developing new methods for fabricating micro three-dimensional structures using state-of-the-art ultrashort pulsed lasers.

As a member of UTokyo Research Institute for Photon Science and Laser Technology, we are also working to create a new system for the rapid transfer of new technologies created by our laboratory to the real industry.

Research topics

Exploration of new phenomena and their physics of artificial nanostructures and its application to optical control

The gate lengths of transistors in semiconductor chips, which have become indispensable to modern society, have now been miniaturized to the order of several tens of nanometers. On the other hand, the wavelength of visible light is approximately 380 nm to 780 nm. This means that we already have the ability to fabricate structures much smaller than the wavelength of light in metals and semiconductors at will. Artificial nanostructures that are smaller than the wavelength of light can be used to create new physical phenomena and to control light based on the new concept of manipulating the interaction with light through the “shape” of appropriately designed nanostructures.We are exploring new phenomena in such artificial nanostructures, elucidating their mechanisms, and applying them to light sources. In particular, we are aiming to apply our light source to the vacuum ultraviolet region with wavelengths below 200 nm and terahertz waves with frequencies near 1 THz, which are in need of development of control methods.

Circular polarization generation using photonic crystal nanomembranes in the vacuum ultraviolet region

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Research Introduction Video:

Press release:

Creation of micro three-dimensional structures by ultrashort pulse laser and their application to electromagnetic wave control

It is a well-known fact that when a material is exposed to intense laser light, the material is dRecent advances in laser technology have made it possible to generate intense and stable ultrashort pulsed lasers that can not only drill and cut objects, but also fabricate micron-order fine three-dimensional (3D) structures that are difficult to fabricate by other methods. On the other hand, the 3D printer using laser light developed by the Photon Science Institute is attracting attention as a bottom-up technology for fabricating micron-order fine 3D structures, and is a complementary technology to laser processing. Since the structures fabricated by such advanced technology are smaller than electromagnetic waves such as millimeter wave and terahertz wave, they can be utilized as functional materials for new electromagnetic wave control by fabricating appropriate structures. In this research, we are developing such laser-based 3D structure fabrication technology and at the same time developing new functional materials using such technology, and we recommend its application to various fields such as astrophysics and next-generation wireless technology (Beyond 5G).

Moth-eye structure fabricated by laser processing that does not reflect electromagnetic waves
Self-developed Ultra-high-definition 3D printer

Published papers and press release:

〈 Fabrication of fine 3D structures using femtosecond lasers 〉

〈 Fabrication of elements for terahertz control using an ultra-high definition 3D printer 〉

Elucidating the Principles of Laser Processing

It is a well-known fact that when a material is exposed to intense laser light, the material is destroyed, and in fact, laser processing is an important fundamental technology that supports current industry. On the other hand, the mechanism by which ultrashort laser pulses in particular cause material destruction remains unclear. When intense pulsed light that causes material destruction is incident on a material, what kind of process is used to transfer the energy of the light to the material? How does this energy propagate through the electron and lattice systems inside the material, and what triggers the dramatic and irreversible phenomenon of destruction? To find answers to these questions, we have developed state-of-the-art optical control techniques and various measurement methods, and are conducting research by making full use of these techniques. Through this research, we aim not only to elucidate the mechanism of laser-induced material destruction, but also to use this knowledge to further advance laser processing technology.

In addition, we encourage collaboration with the activities of several national projects to rapidly transfer new technologies created in the laboratory to the real world.

Creation of a new technology to elucidate the processed shape by femtosecond laser processing

Published papers and Press release: