Associate Professor

+44 (0)131 451 3773
Room 2.05
David Brewster Building
Heriot-Watt University
Fabio Biancalana

My research is focused on the linear and nonlinear interactions between light and matter in structures of various dimensionalities with a size of the order of few hundreds or even tens of nanometers ("photonic nanostructures"). In particular, I am interested in the description of nonlinear light propagation and soliton formation in photonic crystal fibers, waveguide arrays, periodic and aperiodic photonic crystals, subwavelength fibers, free or metal plasmas, excitonic semiconductors and graphene-based structures.

Selected publications
  1. W. H. Reeves, D. V. Skryabin, F. Biancalana, J. C. Knight, P. St. J. Russell, F. G. Omenetto, A. Efimov, and A. J. Taylor, "Transformation and control of ultra-short pulses in dispersion-engineered photonic crystal fibres," Nature 424, 511 (2003).
  2. C. Conti, M. Schmidt, P. St. J. Russell, and F. Biancalana, "Highly noninstantaneous solitons in liquid-core photonic crystal fibers," Physical Review Letters 105, 263902 (2010).
  3. M. F. Saleh, W. Chang, P. Hölzer, A. Nazarkin, J. C. Travers, N. Y. Joly, P. St. J. Russell, and F. Biancalana, "Theory of photoionization-induced blueshift of ultrashort solitons in gas-filled hollow-core photonic crystal fibers," Physical Review Letters 107, 203902 (2011).
  4. M. F. Saleh, W.Chang, J. C. Travers, P. St. J. Russell and F. Biancalana, "Plasma-Induced Asymmetric Self-Phase Modulation and Modulational Instability in Gas-Filled Hollow-Core Photonic Crystal Fibers," Physical Review Letters 109, 113902 (2012).
  5. G. K. L. Wong, M. S. Kang, H. W. Lee, F. Biancalana, C. Conti, T. Weiss, and P. St. J. Russell, "Excitation of orbital angular momentum resonances in helically twisted photonic crystal fiber," Science 337, 446 (2012).

Fabio obtained his 'Laurea' degree in Theoretical Particle Physics in 2001 at the University of Roma III, Italy. His PhD project at the University of Bath (UK) was about the theoretical and numerical understanding of supercontinuum generation and various nonlinear effects in photonic crystal fibres. Fabio is the recipient of the 15th and last Deryck Chesterman Medal (Univ. of Bath, 2005), for outstanding research in physics. He spent 2 years at the Tyndall National Institute in Cork (Ireland), working on the solitonic sector of the coherent semiconductor Bloch equations, and on the dynamical propagation of pulses in spatiotemporal photonic crystals. At the Tyndall Institute he was awarded an IRCSET Postdoctoral Fellowship (2006). After that he moved to Cardiff University (UK) where he holds an EPSRC Fellowship in Theoretical Physics (2007), working on the project Nonlinear Resonant Optical Phenomena And Solitons In Polaritonic Photonic Crystals. Fabio Joined Heriot-Watt as a Reader in 2012, and is at the same time leading the Max Planck Research Group on "Nonlinear Photonic Nanostructures" at the Max Planck Institute for the Science of Light in Erlangen, Germany.