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Peter Parbrook

Principal Investigator

Wide bandgap semiconductors have been my research focus for almost all my career. These materials are capable of producing short wavelength visible light for LEDs or Lasers, and are today the enabler for all high efficiency LED lighting, and for Blu-ray disc systems. I undertook my PhD working jointly between the University of Strathclyde and the UK Government funded Royal Signals and Radar Establishment. My area of study was zinc selenide and related II-VI semiconductors, and area that I continued in, working as a Toshiba Fellow, in Kawasaki, Japan, where over four years. On moving to a faculty position at the University of Sheffield, I attracted the funding to purchase and build the III-Nitride semiconductor growth facility, which is now known to be the best material for these systems. There I developed light emitting diodes and lasers, and focused particularly on moving to shorter ultraviolet wavelengths, which have application in medical diagnosis and treatment, and in sterilization (particularly of water). In 2009 I took the opportunity to become a SFI funded Stokes Professor and have been undertaking Nitride Semiconductor research for UV devices at Tyndall since. Here we grow the materials as thin crystal layers using state of the art facilities, and then fabricate devices. We have successfully developed UV LEDs operating at wavelengths as short as 240 nm (for use in a space application) as well as novel methods to create nanostructures investigate routes to improve device performance. Working with a material that then enables high performance systems, for a medical treatment, or to reduce energy usages makes the area a very exciting and satisfying one to work in. IPIC allows one both for focus on the exciting science, and to work together to see its application is systems that will help people and society.