Novel Micro-Spectrometer for Diagnostic & Other Analytical Applications

Yong-Hang Zhang (Inventor)

Research output: Patent


The inventions of semiconductor lasers and photodetectors have enabled optical fiber communication, which has brought us into the information age. With the exploding development of optical communications, the optoelectronics industry is becoming more mature. The focus of optoelectronics research and development has been applied to many other applications such as CD players, barcode readers, and scientific instruments. However, the potential of semiconductor optoelectronics is still far from being completely exploited.The most frequently used instruments for optical spectroscopy are FTIR and grating/prism spectrometers. Both of these are bulky, heavy, and expensive. For many applications it is highly desirable to have a very small spectrometer with low cost. Researchers at Arizona State University have devised a novel "micro-spectrometer". This new analytical device will find extremely broad applications in medical diagnostic, environment monitoring, chemical and biochemical sensing, space missions, and drug detection for law enforcement, to name a few.This novel micro-spectrometer has a very simple structure consisting of just a single tunable photodetector with a very narrow response spectrum and a data acquisition/display electronics unit that can be built easily by using off-the-shelf parts. This tunable photodetector has a centered wavelength at 2.2 mm can be tuned up to 400 nm, i.e. from 2.0 - 2.4 mm. In any case, an array of such devices may be fabricated to achieve an extended spectral coverage range.
Original languageEnglish (US)
StatePublished - Jan 1 1900


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