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HyperSpectral Terahertz neAR-field nanoscope exploiting miniaturized frequency-combs


‘STAR’ aims to increase the technology readiness level of the state-of-the-art graphene-integrated, miniaturized frequency comb (FC) quantum cascade laser (QCL), operating at terahertz (THz) frequencies, devised under the ERC consolidator grant ‘SPRINT’, and develop a detector-less sensing/imaging demonstrator apt to the translation of this technology to industrial end-users.

The focus is on providing a compact, low-cost, hyperspectral, nanoscale imaging system, which creates amplitude- and phase-resolved images, employing the not-invasive broadband THz-frequency light of a metrological frequency-comb source, without making use of an external detector.
This nanoscope ensures 40-100 nm spatial resolution, >100 times smaller than the THz free-space wavelength, coherent detection and mapping of the THz optical response of materials over the continuous 2-5 THz bandwidth provided by a fully stabilized THz QCL FC, with noise-equivalent-power <10pW/√Hz and fast (
Specific objectives are to manufacture a compact, portable and user-friendly THz hyperspectral nanoscope, validate its core technology with commercial end-users and at trade-shows and evaluate opportunities for THz FC self-detection nanoscopy, identifying novel end-user applications, with a detailed market, IPR and regulatory compliance study. By the end of this programme, I plan to identify a solid exploitation route by directly interacting with THz instrument producers and with targeted commercial end-users.

Pushing forward a solid commercial exploitation route, STAR prospects new directions and long-term impacts on many interdisciplinary fields crossing engineering, biology, medicine, cultural heritage, material science and quantum technology, and in a frontier frequency domain where electronics and photonics find a fascinating convergence.


Net EU contribution
€ 150 000,00
Piazzale Aldo Moro 7
00185 Roma

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Centro (IT) Lazio Roma
Activity type
Research Organisations
Non-EU contribution
No data