On behalf of the founding Directors, Norbert Klein and Stepan Lucyszyn, we welcome you to the Centre for Terahertz Science and Engineering (CTSE). This is a virtual Centre, hosted by the Faculty of Engineering at Imperial College London. The Centre supports a wide range of activities across the extended terahertz (THz) spectrum, from ca. 100 GHz to 100 THz – coving the sub-terahertz (millimetre-wave), terahertz (submillimetre-wave) and ‘over the THz horizon’ (thermal infrared) bands. While the core of the Centre’s activities are within the Departments of Materials (material processing and THz metrology) and Electrical and Electronic Engineering (analytical/numerical modelling, microfabrication processing and millimetre-wave/thermal infrared metrology), there are strong collaborations with the Departments of Bioengineering, Physics and Medicine. Indeed, the inter-Faculty nature of our work highlights the scientific mission of our Centre, which complements our advanced engineering within the Faculty of Engineering.
In January 2012, a survey was carried out to see how much THz-related research was being carried out within the Faculty of Engineering. Even at that time, Imperial had a wide range of diverse THz activities:
- Analytical/numerical modelling for solutions to complex problems in electrodynamics
- Advanced contact-free material characterisation
- Exploitation of exotic materials
- Fundamental research in device physics
- Fabrication and characterization of novel components
- Exploration of novel sensor system approaches
- Systems level applications
For this reason, in February 2012, the CTSE was established to provide support and a forum for creating new interactions within Imperial. This document highlights some of the activities and achievements that have been supported over the first three years of operation. We present a dozen Case Studies, each representing a body of work with associated list of papers published in the open literature. This catalogue of activity pays testament to our diverse interests with the extended terahertz frequency range.
Currently within the UK there are many research groups working in terahertz-related fields. The philosophy adopted by the CTSE is to push the boundaries in science and technology. However, to make a tangible impact, particular emphasis is placed on creating real engineering solutions to major challenges facing society; examples include biomedical sensing (which could ultimately lead to the early detection of certain cancers from measurements of the skin or even a single droplet of blood) to enhanced security (with secure wireless communications and counterfeit detection systems).
Furthermore, the CTSE aims to address issues of creating ubiquitous applications over the extended terahertz spectrum; this requires low cost engineering solutions at all technology levels (materials, components, circuits and systems) and in supporting areas (software development, manufacturing and metrology). Finally, the CTSE aims to expand its educational role, by teaching advanced topics in terahertz science and engineering to those working in associated areas of research and development.
In addition to pushing boundaries within academic research, the CTSE has close partnerships with industry. Examples of this include EMISENS (www.emisens.com) and Link Microtek Ltd. (www.linkmicrotek.com), for the manufacture and commercialization, respectively, of a bottle scanner for airport security. This is based on technology being developed by Prof. Klein. Moreover, we collaborate on THz technology with Rohde & Schwarz (www.rohde-schwarz.co.uk) – one of the world leading manufacturers of THz measurement equipment – and QMC Instruments (www.terahertz.co.uk) – a prominent THz components and systems manufacturer within the UK. As a direct spin-out from the CTSE, within the area of biotechnology, EVA Diagnostic (www.evadiagnostics.com) was recently founded by Dr Toby Basey-Fisher – one of Prof. Klein’s former PhD students. This company won the 2014 Oxbridge Biotech Roundtable OneStart competition.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if you wish to visit our Centre and discuss possibilities for future collaboration. Our current successful strategic associations with external organisations are shown on this website. The opportunities for terahertz research and development are endless and we can achieve more together.