News | Nov. 19, 2019

2019 Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellowship Spotlight: Siddharth Ramachandran

Dr. Ramachandran, selected as one of the ten 2019 Vannevar Bush Faculty Fellows, will study what he calls 'tornado light beams', i.e. light beams with optical angular momentum that gives them a spiraling structure. The orbital angular momentum of these exotic beams can provide a number of exotic effects when interacting with matter; it may even unwrap individual DNA strands for rapid sorting. The additional information they carry in their angular modes also provides more bandwidth, with potential for communications and for much more sensitive laser sensors. By examining the various ways electrons in condensed matter are moved by photons’ orbital angular momentum, he hopes for insights into the fundamental aspects of quantum theory that underlie our communications, sensing, and high-powered lasers. In his free time, Dr. Ramachandran enjoys jazz and volunteering to educate underprivileged children across the world. For more, see: