Bacteriorhodopsin optical switch

Serey Thai, John E. Malowicki, Qi Wang Song

Research output: Contribution to journalConference Articlepeer-review

4 Scopus citations


A novel bacteriorhodopsin based photonic crossbar system for broadband communications is proposed. This free-space dynamically reconfigurable NxN crossbar switch utilizes an intelligent holographic system for routing and switching by dynamically reconfigurable gratings of bacteriorhodopsin, which has high write/read photocyclicity that is greater than 106. The major advantages of the system include large interconnectivity density, transparent data redistribution, and fiber optic bandwidth capacity. In addition, the switching device resolves optical-to-electronic and electronic-to- optical conversion bottlenecks and reduces signal-to-noise degradation which is due to the conversions. This crossbar design is completely free of internal blocking which is one of the major drawbacks of guided optical crossbars. The system takes advantage of the parallelism and multidimensionality inherent in optics and can be scaled to a large capacity of NxN, while it maintains a low weight and portability which are a projected requirement for future broadband communications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)107-118
Number of pages12
JournalProceedings of SPIE - The International Society for Optical Engineering
StatePublished - 1998
EventPhotonic Processing Technology and Applications II - Orlando, FL, United States
Duration: Apr 14 1998Apr 14 1998


  • Bacteriorhodopsin
  • Data transparent redistribution
  • Dynamic holograms
  • Fiber optic bandwidth capacity
  • Free space
  • High density
  • No internal blockings

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Applied Mathematics
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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