This project involves the acquisition of a chemical vapor deposition system for the growth of semiconductor materials to advance the frontier of advanced photonic and electronics devices. This equipment will help to establish a new Laboratory at the University of Maryland (UMD) which will serve as a resource center for the broad community of researchers working in the field of semiconductor materials and devices. The strategic location in the National Capital Region will leverage the existing expertise at UMD and nearby institutions to provide many users and collaborators. The research enabled by this acquisition will lead to higher efficiency devices that will reduce power consumption in data centers and will ensure secure communication networks. Collaboration with nearby Norfolk State University will permit several of their professors and students to participate in the planned research. The PIs will involve students from local high schools to take part in research summer programs. Workshops will be organized in the Washington area to energize collaborations between local universities, government laboratories and local industry.
The proposed work to establish a metal-organic chemical vapor deposition (MOCVD) system will serve as the center for preparation of III-nitride semiconductor materials and devices. The system will be used by researchers at UMD and nearby institutions to address many areas of nitride-based photonics and electronics devices. There will be five overlapping research thrust areas: Nitride Materials Design and Synthesis; Nitride Quantum Devices; Nitride Optical Devices; Nitride Devices for Energy Applications; and, Nitride Electronic and Sensor Devices. The acquisition will promote multidisciplinary efforts between researchers in materials science, chemical engineering, device physics and electrical engineering. The UMD research team, and their collaborators from across the US, will focus on a number of fundamental issues currently limiting the performance of nitride-based device structures, including quantum dots in nitrides for quantum information at room temperature and novel nanowire devices for solid state lighting. The MOCVD system will allow exploration of the unique properties of III-nitride materials leading to photovoltaic devices for highly-efficient solar energy collection, high power devices for smart grid applications, and efficient photonic detectors based on confined epitaxy. The PI and co-PIs have the necessary expertise required for this utilization of the MOCVD system and for the planned research activities.