View All Vacancies

Research Fellow 1 for Photonics @ Interface: Si/Ge APD

Sustainable Electronic Technologies

Location:  Highfield Campus
Salary:   £30,395 to £37,345 Per annum
Full Time Fixed Term 4 years
Closing Date:  Wednesday 21 August 2019
Interview Date:   Monday 16 September 2019
Reference:  1155519FP

Applications are invited for a full time fixed term 4 year Research Fellow position in the University of Southampton, to undertake research on the EPSRC funded Standard Grant Project, “Photonics @ Interface: Heterogeneous Integrations for Generation, Detection, Conversion, and Modulation”.

You will work for novel photonic devices in particular engaging for developing Si/Ge APD and will work closely with another researcher working for Si/LN hybrid devices by developing novel heterogeneous interfaces. We will be working with 2 industrial partners (Hitachi and ID Quantique UK Ltd) and 6 international academic partners (University Tokyo, MIT, IIT, Gifu College, Toyohashi University., and JAIST), therefore excellent communications skills are a pre-requisite..

We will develop novel photonic devices by bonding two different semiconductor substrates with different spacing between atoms. It was very difficult to ensure an excellent quality at the interface, because the atoms cannot connect perfectly, if the lattice spacing is different. We will overcome this problem by making nano-scale tiny trenches to allow atoms to expand for releasing the strain accumulated at the interface. The quality of the interface is very important to make sure to reduce defects in the atomic scale. We will use the interface for making a highly sensitive detector to identify even just single photon (quantum of light), which is impossible to realise with defects due to the noise from additional carriers created by defects. This detector will be useful for future quantum technologies to enable secure communications and powerful commutations. We will also develop a novel laser and high speed optical switches by using this interface.

 Our project is summarised as follows:

Novel Manufacturing Technologies for Enabling Heterogeneous Integrations: We will develop new wafer-scale bonding process technologies to allow excellent interface qualities without defects. Our challenges to overcome the difference of lattice constants and thermal expansion constants for bonded materials. We will accumulate comprehensive knowledge for new bonding techniques. 

Si/Ge Avalanche-Photo-Diodes and Si/Ge Lasers: The strain engineered interface will enable us to reduce dark currents of Si/Ge Avalanche-Photo-Diodes (APDs) to the level useful for detecting single photons at room temperature. Si/Ge APDs are also useful for LiDAR (Laser Imaging Detection and Ranging). The improved interface quality also enables to achieve lasing of Ge on a Si substrate towards monolithic integrations.

Si/LiNbO3 Hybrid Optical Modulator and Second-Harmonic-Generators: We will also bond LiNbO3 on a Si substrate, which allows us to utilise the electro-optic and nonlinear effects of LiNbO3, while keeping the advantages of nanoscale patterning of Si. The hybrid optical modulator with a slot waveguide will be operated at attojoule power consumption by removing the 50 Ohm-termination. The hybrid Second-Harmonic-Generators (SHGs) will convert various wavelengths to generate green and UV lights for much denser data-writing on DVDs.

We think our approach will establish a new way of making heterogeneous interface with improved quality. Wafer-scale bonding of a patterned substrate is certainly well-known, but the nano-scale patterning to form perfect bonding in atomic-scale has not yet been achieved, yet. We will accumulate comprehensive knowledge on the developed interface, in terms of various physical parameters such as strains, voids, adhesions, and defects for researchers in nanoelectronics and photonics.

It is essential you have a PhD in Electronics or Physics or equivalent professional qualifications and experience in research materials.

About the University

The University of Southampton is an institution in the top one per cent of world universities and one of the UK’s top 15 research-intensive universities. We have an international reputation for research, teaching and enterprise and hold an Athena SWAN Silver award.

Applications for Research Fellow positions will be considered from candidates who are working towards or nearing completion of a relevant PhD qualification. The title of Research Fellow will be applied upon successful completion of the PhD. Prior to the qualification being awarded, the title of Research Assistant will be given.

Application Procedure

You should submit your completed online application form at The application deadline will be midnight on the closing date stated above. If you need any assistance, please call Hannah Farrance (Recruitment Team) on +44 (0) 23 8059 2507. Please quote reference 1155519FP on all correspondence.

Athena SWAN Bronze Award holder: Faculty of Engineering

The closing date for this job opportunity has now passed, and applications are no longer being accepted for this position

Further details:

We aim to be an equal opportunities employer and welcome applications from all sections of the community. Please note that applications from agencies will not be accepted unless indicated in the job advert.

Login to your account


Forgotten your password?

Register for an account

Mindful Employer Disability Confident Leader HR Excellence In Research Stonewall Diversity Champion Athena Swan Silver Award - University of Southampton Committed to being an Inclusive Employer Technician Commitment