Plasmonically Enhanced Graphene-Based Mid-IR Light Source

Technology #11596

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Schematic showing the UCF ultra-fast mid-IR light source.
Michael Leuenberger, Ph.D.
Muhammad Waqas Shabbir
Patent Protection

Provisional Patent Application Filed

Key Points

  • Proof-of-concept for producing a graphene-based thermal source in the mid-IR regime
  • Stronger than graphene-based thermal sources in the near-IR, can be tuned in emission frequency, and features beamsteering
  • Paves the way to graphene-based optical mid-IR communication, mid-IR color displays, mid-IR spectroscopy, IR camouflage, gas detection, and virus detection


The University of Central Florida invention describes a proof-of-concept of a method to tune the spectrally selective thermal emission from nanopatterned graphene (NPG). This is done by means of a gate voltage that varies the resonance wavelength of localized surface plasmons (LSPs) around the circular holes that are arranged in a hexagonal or square lattice pattern in a single graphene sheet in the wavelength regime between 3 μm and 12 μm. By generalizing Planck’s radiation theory to grey‐body emission, the thermal emission spectrum can be tuned in or out of the two main atmospheric transparency windows of 3 to 5 μm and 8 to 12 μm in the mid‐IR regime. It can also be tuned in or out of the opaque mid‐IR regime between 5 and 8 μm.