Organic Materials Architectured for Researching Vibronic Excitations with Light in the Infrared (MARVEL-IR)
The detection of infrared (IR) light underpins modern science, technology, and society in profound ways, permitting the observation of objects and information that are invisible to conventional detectors, imagers, and cameras. However, despite decades of development, current IR semiconductors possess numerous drawbacks that limit their widespread use and the development of critical emerging technologies. This project will investigate completely new light-matter interactions, theoretical and computational approaches, novel polymer semiconductors with tailored electronic structures, and devices to enable optical to electrical transduction of IR light, a fundamentally new capability for organic materials. These materials and devices will satisfy the functional and economic requirements for technologies that can address critical national needs with global societal impacts in climate change, manufacturing, energy, healthcare, information science, consumer applications, future aerospace and defense-wide applications, and many others. New theoretical, synthetic, characterization, and device advances will coalesce with Air Force Research Labs and industry partnerships to produce new materials and devices for technology transfer. Workforce development efforts will focus on multidisciplinary education through co-mentorship, industry and Department of Defense interactions, outreach to underrepresented high school and undergraduate students, and professional development actives for research and leadership training.