Master and Bachelor assignments

The available projects for MSc and BSc assignments in the group are listed below. Feel free to contact Dr. David Marpaung (, office: Meander 127) if you are interested in these projects. Each project can be tailored either for MSc or BSc assignment.

Universal Integrated Photonic Modulation Transformer

Integrated spectral shaper and modulation transformer

Optical modulation is a key function in analog RF photonic signal processing. This conversion of RF signal to the optical domain dictates the loss, linearity, and the range of functionalities that can be carried out. To date, the varieties of analog optical modulation are fairly limited, where phase and intensity modulation being the most prominent. But more advanced optical signal processing requires ways of synthesizing optical spectrum through combination of complex (phase and amplitude) modulation.

In this project, the student will build a theoretical model of an entirely new device that synthesizes optical modulation with independent phase and amplitude responses. The model will then be translated into a photonic integrated circuit design, comprising building blocks such as ring resonators and tunable couplers. The device will be realized in low-loss silicon nitride material platform.

Further reading
  • D. Marpaung, M Pagani, S Shahnia, “Microwave photonic notch filter”, US Patent App. 15/736,446, (2018)  [pdf] 

  • S. Shahnia, M. Pagani, B. Morrison, B. J. Eggleton, and D. Marpaung, ” Independent
    manipulation of the phase and amplitude of optical sidebands in a highly-stable RF
    photonic filter”, Optics Express 23, 2378 (2015) [pdf]

New material platforms for on-chip Brillouin scattering 

Optical modes of silicon waveguides

Since first reported in 2010, the observation of stimulated Brillouin scattering in photonic circuits have gained considerable attention. The potential of exploiting this distinct nonlinear effect on a chip opens the pathway towards technological advancements such as the creation of high spectral purity integrated lasers and advanced integrated microwave photonic signal processor to name a few.

But to date, this effect can only be observed in a handful of material platforms, such as chalcogenide glasses and silicon, which are pegged by several fundamental and technological limitations. In this project, the student will be part of a team that explores new material candidates for observing SBS on a chip.  The student will perform a series of simulations to determine the optical and acoustic properties of these materials. The model will then be translated into a and optimized optical waveguide design for efficient SBS generation. Fabrication of the samples will be sought in collaboration with partners in the University of Twente as well as overseas.

Understanding noise and nonlinearity of on-chip Brillouin scattering 


On chip stimulated Brillouin scattering (SBS) can be a powerful tool for RF and optical signal processing due to its flexible all-optical reconfiguration and ultra-high spectral resolution. As any optical amplification process, SBS suffers from noise and nonlinearity, i.e., signal compression. To date, a comprehensive study of the noise and nonlinearity of on-chip SBS hasn’t been properly carried out. It is imperative to form a solid understanding of these aspects to develop more advanced and high performance signal processing based on SBS.

In this project, the student will carry out a theoretical and experimental investigations on the noise and compression of fiber-based and chip-based SBS. Impact of the variation of key optical parameters including device length and optical powers will be investigated. Comparison between the developed theoretical models and experimental results will be carried out and thoroughly analyzed.

Further reading
  • A. Choudhary, Y. Liu, D. Marpaung, and B. J. Eggleton, “Brillouin Filtering with Enhanced Noise Performance and Linearity Using Anti-Stokes Interactions,” in Conference on Lasers and Electro-Optics (CLEO 2018) paper STu4F.2  [pdf] 

  • Mattia Pagani, Erwin H. W. Chan, and Robert A. Minasian, “A Study of the Linearity Performance of a Stimulated Brillouin Scattering-Based Microwave Photonic Bandpass Filter,” J. Lightwave Technol. 32, 999-1005 (2014)  [pdf]