About Mikael C. Rechtsman's Work
Technology based on the use of light – its generation, harvesting and manipulation – has transformed modern life. For example, we use lasers for surgery and manufacturing, solar panels to sustainably produce electricity, and fiber optics to send internet signals around the world. As both the demand for and complexity of photonic devices grow, there is a need for completely new ideas. Rechtsman’s research group aims to develop new ideas and to employ those from other fields (e.g., solid-state physics) with the aim of designing, fabricating, and realizing conceptually new photonic devices with the potential for orders-of-magnitude improvement on current designs. They are particularly interested in ‘photonic topological insulators’, which have the potential to overcome limitations due to inevitable disorder. If successful, his group will demonstrate new fundamental physics, as well as device designs that have potential application in medical imaging, high-power lasers, and solar energy.