Innovation and Partnerships Office

Waveguide Embedded (WEB) Plasmon Laser with Multiplexing and Electrical Modulation IB-3320


  • Ultracompact on-chip optical interconnects
  • Ultrahigh density data storage
  • Trace-level biochemical sensors
  • High resolution displays


  • First directionally emitted nanoscale plasmon laser
  • Radiation efficiency 20 times greater than previous technologies
  • Integrates photonic and electronic functionalities
  • Compact design has minimal footprint


Berkeley Lab researchers Ren-Min Ma and Xiang Zhang have developed a deep subwavelength waveguide embedded (WEB) plasmon laser with directional emission, highly efficient optical power conversion efficiency, high radiation efficiency, and on-chip array of multiplexed, multicolored nanolasers in a minimal footprint.

The WEB plasmon laser directs more than 70% of its radiation into an embedded semiconductor nanobelt waveguide, resulting in a radiation efficiency 20 times greater than previous technologies. The nanoscale plasmon laser design allows both efficient electrical modulation and wavelength multiplexing. Its plasmonic circuit integrates five independently modulated, multicolored plasmon laser sources into a single semiconductor nanobelt waveguide. These features combine to offer industry a unique solution for large-scale, ultradense photonic integration at the nano level.

Nanoscale plasmon lasers are key to advancing ultradense optoelectronic circuitry, single-molecule sensing, and ultrahigh density data storage technologies. Until now, however, concerns with their beam divergence, efficiency, and size have limited advance commercial applications.

DEVELOPMENT STAGE:  Bench scale prototype.

STATUS:  Patent pending.  Available for licensing or collaborative research.

Ren-Min Ma, Xiaobo Yin, Rupert F. Oulton, Volker J. Sorger, and Xiang Zhang, “Multiplexed and Electrically Modulated Plasmon Laser Circuit”, Nano Letters, 12 (10), pp 5396-5402.