A project years in the making comes to fruition

Yao and Wang have worked on this line of research for approximately six years. The development of the sensor builds on previous discoveries from their research groups that resulted in the sensor’s component materials and parts.

Wang has more than 20 years of experience fabricating electronics at the nano- and microscales, but he says this research presented new challenges for him.

“Fabrication of MetPolarIm required thinking and often rethinking the whole process,” he says. “To do this, it is necessary to understand the fundamentals of different processing technologies, tools and their advantages and limitations. The idea is to use the simplest way to produce the devices, and the results need to be reproducible.”

Zuo began working on the development of MetPolarIm with Yao and Wang when he was an electrical engineering doctoral student at ASU about five years ago. As his education advanced and his skills increased, Zuo gained greater involvement in the project and is excited to see that it has reached this stage.

Unleashing a new generation of imaging technology

Zuo and Yao now plan to commercialize the technology while simultaneously improving its capabilities even further. Priorities for further sensor improvements include device efficiency, spectral bandwidth, detection accuracy and field of view to enable more potential applications such as clinical diagnostic imaging.

“This research means a lot to me,” Zuo says. “I think this is an important innovation that can potentially provide broader impact in both research and industry.”