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ECE graduate student Sarat Gundavarapu receives a Best Student Paper Award at the The 25th International Conference on Optical Fiber Sensors (OFS-25)

May 15th, 2017

Gundavarapu receiving award at OFS-25
Gundavarapu awarded the Shaoul “Ziggy” Ezekiel Best Student Paper Award for his work on integrated optical gyroscopes – he also received a UCSB Doctoral Student Travel Grant to attend the OFS-25 Conference in Jeju, South Korea

The paper “Integrated Sagnac Optical Gyroscope Sensor Using Ultra-Low-Loss High Aspect Ratio Silicon Nitride Waveguide Coil” is based on his work on inertial motion sensors becoming increasingly ubiquitous, with technologies ranging from low sensitivity, compact MEMS-based gyros, to high sensitivity, complex fiber-based systems. The paper reported progress towards a highly sensitive, low cost integrated waveguide optical gyro (IWOG) enabled by our ultra-low-loss Silicon nitride waveguide technology. 

Gundavarapu’s research is focused on exploring options to develop chip scale integrated optical gyroscopes which can improve the manufacturability of high sensitivity gyroscopes in general, while at the same time significantly reducing the size, weight, and cost. 

Best student paper awards at OFS recognize the contribution of academic research to the field of optical sensing. The awards are named after renowned professors who have helped advance the field of optical sensors – Prof. Shaoul “Ziggy” Ezekiel (MIT) was a pioneer in the field of optical gyroscopes.

Gundavarapu started his master’s degree in Electrical Engineering at UCSB in 2011 and joined Professor Dan Blumenthal’s Optical Communications and Photonic Integration Group (OCPI) in the winter of 2014 where he is presently a 4th year Ph.D. student. He has authored and co-authored 8 publications and has one patent so far in the fields of integrated optical gyroscopes, integrated optical filters and integrated optical lasers.

Sarat’s co-authors include Michael Belt who played a pivotal role in optical packaging and helping with gyroscope characterization and Taran Huffman who designed and fabricated the low loss Nitride waveguide coil. Discussions with Minh Tran aided in improving the experimental setup and gaining results. The vision and guidance of ECE Professors Dan Blumenthal and John Bowers helped in realizing a chip scale gyroscope coil sensor.

The 25th International Conference on Optical Fiber Sensors (OFS-25)

SPIE Digital Library – "Integrated Sagnac Optical Gyroscope Sensor Using Ultra-Low-Loss High Aspect Ratio Silicon Nitride Waveguide Coil"

Optical Communications and Photonic Integration Group (OCPI)