About Me

I joined Mikael Rechtsman's group at Pennsylvania State University in August of 2015 to work on topological photonic systems. Stay tuned as these projects come to fruition.

From August, 2015 to August, 2017, I was a postdoctoral scholar in Shanhui Fan's group at Stanford University. While at Stanford, my research focused on the properties of systems with non-uniform distributions of gain and loss. These efforts resulted in:

  • Development of a general theory of parity-time symmetric photonic crystals.
  • Derivation of a general condition for systems to exhibit 'bending' eigenvalue trajectories as the gain or loss in a system is varied.
  • Development of a systematic treatment of the effects of adding gain and loss to systems possessing Weyl points.
  • Discovery of a class of two-dimensional photonic crystal designs which support complete photonic band gaps with the lowest known index contrast.

My thesis work in Douglas Stone's theoretical optics and photonics research group at Yale University focused on both developing new analytic theories and the associated numerical methods to understand lasers from the semiclassical and fully quantum perspective. These efforts have led to the following:

  • Development of a new form of steady-state semiclassical laser theory, more general than any previously found.
  • Prediction and numerical confirmation of new physics in laser systems subjected to an externally applied signal.
  • Design of a laser cavity optimized for highly multi-mode speckle-free operation for use in optical imaging experiments.
  • Development of a new, and again more general form of the theory of the quantum-limited laser linewidth and quantitative verification of the theory by simulation of the full lasing equations in the presence of Langevin noise.

Picture of Alex Cerjan backpacking in Grand Teton National Park.