Epitaxial Graphene Dots for High-Performance Terahertz Bolometers

Categories: “Medical and Research Devices

Reference #: 2015-031

OTC Contact: Sharon E. Pula, Esq. (Directory Information | Send a Message)


Hot-electron bolometric detection using nano-patterned dots of epitaxial graphene


  • THz imaging, spectroscopy, molecular spintronics
  • Create gated quantum dot bolometers that can be coupled with antennas
  • Create hybrid structures with graphene source-drain electrodes and a MoS 2 channel, wherein hot electrons are created on the graphene under irradiation and are carried along the MoS 2 channel


  • Can detect within the THz frequency range, conferring incredibly high responsivity
  • Frequency sensitivity can be adjusted by manipulating size of graphene quantum dots
  • Quantum confinement method offers background noise reduction which surpasses the performance of commercial cooled bolometers
  • The epitaxial graphene fabrication method is fully scalable, allowing the construction of bolometer arrays
  • Superior responsivity allows high resolution even at great depth


Few conventional bolometers are able to detect THz frequencies. These bolometers often require very stringent conditions to achieve high responsivity, such as cooling to near absolute zero. Even when the strict conditions are met, resolution can be poor at THz frequencies due to high noise-equivalent power (NEP).

Researchers at Georgetown University have demonstrated a novel technique to remedy these issues. The device is comparatively simple to construct and delivers extremely high performance responsivity. The use of quantum confinement confers the advantage of low NEP even at relatively high temperatures. The properties of graphene allow the device to reset quickly.

Stage of Development

Reduced to practice and tested


Abdel El Fatimy
Paola Barbara
Kurt Gaskill

Patent Status

Provisional Application