Quantum Cooling Systems using Mode Controlled Blue Lasers (CoolBlue2)

Lead Research Organisation: University of Glasgow
Department Name: School of Engineering


CoolBlue2 is a highly innovative follow on porject with a goal to further develop next generation GaN laser technology for implementation in quantum sensors based on atomic cooling. Conventional laser sources for these applications are complex and inefficient whereas a direct blue laser diode source could offer many advantages such as increased power, lower complexity, and smaller size, potentially transforming quantum sensors such as frequency standards from laboratory instruments into miniaturised, robust systems. The project will consist of two cycles of laser design, fabrication and test, in which we will optimise key laser parameters including linewidth and power and wavelength . The project will be led by CSTG Ltd in partnership with the University of Glasgow, Aston University, Helia Photonics and National Physical Laboratory
University of Glasgow offers advanced characterisation, device modelling and advanced lithography at the JWNC. GU is a partner in the Birmingham QT hub which creates excellent opportunities collaboration and an ideal platform for additional funding applications subsequent to this project. Additionally, Professor Paul is currently serving a QT fellowship which means that he is in an ideal position to understand both the technical requirements and the commercial drivers for this new technology.

Planned Impact

he GaN technology developed in this project will be world leading and form critical elements of many quantum technologies. This project will build upon the partner's expertise in this area to develop new laser and optical coating technology.
To develop a lead in GaN technology, it is vital for the UK to take an early role in the miniaturisation of systems required for widespread adoption of these technologies. The development of quantum technologies presents an opportinity to improve society in terms of quality of life, safety, security and jobs in the UK.
As mentioned, in addition to emerging quantum markets, Gallium Nitride (GaN) lasers and associated subsystems have a wide range of applications in display light sources, subsea and terrestrial communications and medical instrumentation. CSTG have will have a key capability in these devices with the associated market and additional revenues.
The knowledge and expertise generated during this project will allow CSTG and Helia to develop new products, increasing their addressable market. In particular, it will allow products to serve the emerging GaN laser markets where single wavelength devices are required. The successful introduction of these products will require increased manpower resulting in the creation of jobs. The additional revenues could allow CSTG to invest further in R+D projects beyond the timescale of this proposed project.
The companies involved in the supply chain will also have increased activity, safeguarding jobs or leading to job creation. The advanced devices will result in systems with reduced size and power consumption compared to the competition leading to a cost or performance advantage. Enhanced understanding and improved efficiency of GaN devices systems could have influence in markets outside of quantum systems, such as displays or solid state lighting where the markets are established and high volume. Reducing the power consumption of electronic and electrical systems in general is positive for society.
Commercialisation of academic research at the University of Glasgow and the associated high impact publications will have a positive impact on the research impact status allowing it to attract enhanced funding.
Description GaN lasers at 400-415 nm have been realised.
Exploitation Route CSTG and Helia will take the work forward on a commercial basis. Further funding has been won by the consortium partners.
Sectors Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Electronics

Description During this project, the consortium has been contacted by commercial laser systems manufacturer both demonstrating the strength of technology and the efficacy of the dissemination. They are a manufacturer of specialist, low to mid volume laser systems. Given sufficient visibility of a market opportunity and maturity of the supply chain, expects to continue to invest in product development after CoolBlue 2 has finished. This is likely to be at the chip or packaged device level, although clearly opportunities may exist for subsystem-based products. This project is perhaps unusual in that the markets not associated with QT are far larger and far more mature. These are in displays, medical, communications and lighting. As a result there are some large as well as some niche players in this technology. CSTG aims to be a supplier at the devices level for this technology.
First Year Of Impact 2021
Sector Aerospace, Defence and Marine,Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Electronics,Manufacturing, including Industrial Biotechology
Impact Types Economic

Description The Quantum Economic Development Consortium (QED-C) invitation-only virtual workshop. 
Form Of Engagement Activity A formal working group, expert panel or dialogue
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact The Quantum Economic Development Consortium (QED-C) held an invitation-only virtual workshop on Quantum-Enabling Laser Technologies (QELT). As an expert and a leader in important aspects of the workshop, I was invited to participate, joining a diverse group that will identify the opportunities and needs in the field. The invited paper that I gave was concerned with GaN DFB lasers and the commercial and technology opportunities for these devices.

What normally would be a two-day workshop will took place over four half-day sessions on September 2, 3, 9 and 10 from 11:00am-3:00pm ET. 2020.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2020