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DARPA Introduces Optical Microsystems Dev’t Program

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has unveiled an effort that will help address challenges in the development of optical microsystems.

Established under the Electronics Resurgence Initiative, the Lasers for Universal Microscale Optical Systems program aims to build photonics systems that will incorporate optical gain, high-speed modulation and detection as well as low-loss passive capacities into a single chip, DARPA said Thursday.

LUMOS eyes to implement various technologies such as waveguides, modulators and amplifiers into a substrate to support navigation, timing, quantum sensing, communications and computing functions.

The program will also cover the creation of high-speed and near-infrared photonics tools that can support various applications including defense, critical sensing and quantum information. DARPA noted that each research area will tackle photonic integrated circuits and on-chip gain integration techniques.

The agency intends to conduct tests on DoD systems to highlight performance changes brought by complete component integration within the duration of the program.

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