Electronic and Photonic Materials

The Electronic & Photonic Materials group provides a broad array of research activities in semiconductor materials growth, physical properties, and electronic and optoelectronic devices. Because of their superior electronic and optoelectronic properties, GaAs, GaN, InP, GaSb, and other III-V materials are playing an essential role in high-speed electronic devices, optical computing, fiber optics, defense, and medical applications. Blue lasers for optical data storage and semiconductor lighting represent major activities in the Solid State Lighting and Energy Electronics Center. More recently, a research emphasis in Si and non-Si-based microelectromechanical systems has emerged. Extensive state-of-the-art facilities are available for epitaxial growth by Molecular Beam Epitaxy (MBE) and Metalorganic Chemical Vapor Deposition (MOCVD) along with advanced processing capabilities of the UCSB Nanofabrication Facility.

Research Themes in Electronic & Photonic Materials

GaN and Related Materials

Extensive range of activities on GaN-based materials for high efficiency light emitters, including bulk crystal growth by hydride vapor phase epitaxy, sublimation and ammonothermal growth, as well as epitaxial growth by MOCVD and MBE.  Fully integrated research ‘from the substrate to the system’. Research on high brightness UV, blue, green, and white LEDs; blue and green laser diodes; photonic crystals; and high power, high frequency transistors.

GaAs, InP, and GaSb-based Semiconductors  

Research focused on quantum confined structures and devices for vertical cavity laser diodes, high speed transistors and high speed electronics. Dedicated facilities for MBE and MOCVD growth.

Novel Semi-metal / Semiconductor Composites

Development of all-epitaxial metal/semiconductor nanocomposite systems for THz devices, thermoelectrics and advanced metal-semiconductor contacts, with particular emphasis on rare-earth arsenides (e.g., ErAs), phosphides, antimonides, and nitrides. 


Transition metal-doped compound semiconductors for spin physics in semiconductors and for spintronic devices.

Semiconducting Oxides

Exploration of the potential for new class of semiconductors based on transparent conducting oxides including ZnO, In2O3, SnO2 and Ga2O3.