Stanford EE

Convex Nanophotonics: Better Designs, Better Materials, and Optimal Performance

Prof. Owen Miller (Yale)
Spilker 232

ABSTRACT: Nanophotonics is a flourishing field centered around the extraordinary phenomena that arise when light interacts with materials patterned at the scale of the optical wavelength. Thanks to modern lithography tools, we readily have thousands or millions of structural degrees of freedom, for applications from energy conversion to information processing, yet our design tools are primitive by modern optimization standards. In this talk, I will describe “hidden” mathematical convexity structure in nanophotonic design problems. Exploiting this structure offers the possibility for strikingly new approaches to computational design, and a general framework for identifying fundamental limits to light-matter interactions, for applications from metasurface optics and high-index (meta)materials to near-field thermophotovoltaics.

Biography: Owen Miller is an Asst. Prof. of Applied Physics and the Energy Sciences Institute at Yale. His research group uses techniques from applied mathematics to explore the extreme limits of nanophotonics and broader wave physics. This research, in collaboration with experimental and industrial teams, has led to record-performance demonstrations in applications ranging from photovoltaics to smoke grenades. He is the recipient of AFOSR and DARPA young investigator awards, as well as the Yale Graduate Mentor award.