April 18, 2006 Wilmington, DE -- PSI-TEC Corp. announced that it has successfully tested an organic material, engineered via nanotechnology, whose molecular electro-optic coefficient is approximately twice that of the communications industry's highest-performance silicon materials, according to the company's scientists.
Electro-optic materials convert high-speed electronic signals into optical (i.e. light) signals and are thus the core active component in high-speed fiber-optic telecommunications, satellite communications, radar, and navigational systems in both civilian and military sectors. High-activity electro-optic materials are also required for the production of extremely high-speed computational systems and components such as optical interconnects and all-optical transistors.
PSI-TEC's molecular structure is called Perkinamine-NR; the company says that its internal test results exhibited the structure's "unprecedented" electro-optic performance, indicating an approximate doubling of the performance coefficient of the highest-performing organic electro-optic molecules, as previously known by the company's scientists. The company concludes that Perkinamine-NR should provide significant reduction in size and cost with respect to future commercial applications.
According to PSI-TEC, individual Perkinamine-NR molecules exhibited an approximate 15% reduction in physical length over competitive materials; the company expects this outcome to create dramatic performance improvements within a significantly reduced nano-molecular package. The company's scientists consider Perkinamine-NR "to be the first prototypical molecular system of at least two entirely new generations of highly active electro-optic plastics."
"Since our days in the intelligence community, we have been working to prove out our theories in electro-optic material design. We believe that our innovations in fundamental molecular architecture may dictate the future of organic nonlinear-optic material construction," remarks Frederick Goetz Jr., president of PSI-TEC. "Our current results strongly support the feasibility and extreme potential of our entirely novel molecular design approach."
According to the company, until now, the highest-performance electro-optic organic molecules belonged to the CLD/FTC-base class, developed primarily by DARPA, the University of Washington, Lumera Corp., and Lockheed Martin. In studies conducted by Dr. C.C. Teng, co-inventor of the industry-standard Teng-Man analytical technique for the evaluation of organic electro-optic materials and one of PSI-TEC's staff scientists, the Perkinamine-NR structure demonstrated a molecular electro-optic coefficient approximately twice that of CLD. (Molecular performance was benchmarked in equal-molar comparative r33 studies with two industry EO standards, DR1 and CLD-1, at the fiber-optic wavelength of 1300 nm in standard PMMA guest-host films.)
PSI-TEC says that, in previous university studies, CLD-derivatives have been shown to exhibit one of the highest electro-optic coefficients of any known material, by some estimates approximately twice that of FTC-based molecular systems (Shi, Y., Zang, C., Zhang H., Bechtel, J., Dalton, J., Robinson, B., Steier, W.; Science 288, 191-121, 7 April 2000). Patent rights to FTC-based molecular architectures are the intellectual property of Lumera Corp. and are currently being exploited for commercial application in manufacturing electro-optic devices, according to PSI-TEC.
"The performance of Perkinamine-NR is made even more meaningful because these results were obtained from a disciplined, repeatable, low-cost commercial manufacturing process," contends Ron Genova, interim CEO of PSI-TEC and former vice president and general manager of JDSU's Telecom Modules business unit. "In regard to the authority of our outstanding experimental results, Dr. Teng's expertise and professional integrity are unassailable in the scientific community. Further, we have negotiated and finalized a contract with a world-class university, in order to perform independent third-party verification of our results."
PSI-TEC states that its molecularly engineered architectures are the basis of its "disruptive nanotechnology platform." The company says that its material platform has been shown to be able to exploit either "second-order" electro-optic nonlinear-optic effects for future applications in high-speed Internet, telecom, satellite, and military applications, or "third-order" effects where one beam of light is used to control another, allowing for future applications in all-optical transistors and switches.