Advanced Terahertz Spectroscopy

Terahertz (THz) radiation science is expected to have an extremely significant impact on a wide variety of disciplines that are bound to shape the life of people in the 21st century. In particular, THz waves (or T-Rays), with frequency ranging from 0.1 to 10 THz, (i) can penetrate and image inside plastics, semiconductor wafers, fabrics, and most dielectric materials that may be opaque to visible light, (ii) have low photon energies that do not cause harmful photoionization in biological tissue, and (iii) exhibit strong dispersion as well as absorption for numerous molecules. Therefore, T-ray imaging and diagnostics have a tremendous potential for applications in non-destructive testing and imaging, medical diagnosis, health monitoring, and chemical and biological identification. Over the past two decades, there has been extensive developments in THz technologies, during which free-space THz optoelectronics has undergone key advances, mainly propelled by the rapid progress in ultrafast laser technology (e.g. invention and development of the Ti:sapphire laser) and in microelectronics fabrication (e.g. micron-size planar photoconductive antennas). Recently developed optoelectronic techniques for the generation, propagation, and detection of T-rays may well provide the spatial resolution, the temporal accuracy and the field sensitivity required for many of the most challenging applications.
However, applications in the THz region of the electromagnetic spectrum are only now reaching commercialization. The full potential of the spectral region is held back by the limited control that we have over the way this form of light interacts with materials.
In this project, we will explore the ultra-strong coupling of THz light with novel materials, especially with graphene in mind. Using this enhanced coupling that occurs with high THz intensity, we aim to demonstrate new ways to generate, detect and manipulate THz light amplitude and phase.
Using unique high-energy THz pulses available at the Advanced Laser Light Source (, along with sophisticated numerical models, we will leverage our considerable expertise to lead the world in this new area of high-field THz photonics. We have teamed with several Canadian universities who have expressed interest in exploiting the THz spectrum and who will work with us to explore and develop new technologies in the THz spectral region. Future applications range from ultra-high speed wireless communication to stand-off detection of illicit or dangerous substances, all based on non-ionizing THz frequency light.

Faculty Supervisor:

Tsuneyuki Ozaki


Mangaljit Singh



Physics / Astronomy





Current openings

Find the perfect opportunity to put your academic skills and knowledge into practice!

Find Projects