You've reached the home page of:

Dr. Randal A. Salvatore

People call him: Randy

Randy is currently Principal Engineer at Infinera Corporation, where he has been working as part of a team developing Photonic Integrated Circuits (PICs) for Optical Communications. As of March 2009, our Gen1 PIC has been widely deployed throughout the world. Not only does Infinera make PICs, but we make the modules which these PICs are packaged into, the PC board hardware which use these modules, the system racks that these boards plug into, and the software which runs these systems. Infinera is a vertically integrated company which has no competitor yet that deploys large scale PICs. The PIC provides a great advantage in making smaller, more efficient, more managable optical communication networks. Infinera first deployed systems with PICs in November 2004. As of today, there are over 10,000 PICs deployed and operating. Deployed PICs have accumulated over 130 million field hours of operation. Our customers are companies that operate fiber optic networks. We have 56+ customers, including telephone companies, inter-exchange carriers, internet service providers, internet content providers, and all 5 of the top 5 American cable companies. Our equipment is deployed throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. In fact, there is a good chance that when you loaded this webpage, the data has gone through an Infinera PIC. For more information see Infinera.

Other places Randy has worked include: Lasertron Incorporated, Bedford, MA (April 1997 - May 2002) as Staff Engineer. Lasertron's main goal was to make semiconductor lasers and receivers for optical communications. Randy had worked on High Power 980nm chips, fiber Bragg-grating-stabilized (BGS) pump lasers, 1480nm-band pump lasers, and Electroabsorption modulated lasers (EMLs).

The BGS pump product was developed to achieve high power and wavelength stability over a wide range of powers (see Laser Focus World, Nov. 1999). The product completed qualification during 1999 and had gained wide acceptance within the telecom industry. It had generated beyond $15M in revenue the first year after entering production.

In January 2000, Lasertron (including its parent Oak Industries) was taken over by Corning Incorporated. Our location was then called Corning Lasertron. Corning had huge demand for pump lasers since it was the largest single supplier of erbium fiber amplifiers (EDFAs). That changed around 2001-2002 and Corning reduced its interest in optical components. That provided an opportune time to move on to Infinera. Randy is currently a Senior Member of IEEE and a Life Member of OSA. Randy has also consulted for opto-electronic companies.

Randy's main interests include: semiconductor lasers (both high power and high speed), quantum noise, dispersion compensation, filtering, polarization, electronic components, and methods of integrating these elements.

Prior to Lasertron, Randy was a Postdoctoral Research Associate at UCSB. He was involved in projects for 1) an integrated wavelength monitor for sampled-grating, distributed-Bragg-reflector (SGDBR) lasers -- These are broadly wavelength tunable semiconductor lasers that can lase at any one of about thirty distinct wavelengths in the optical spectrum and 2) a photon number amplifier -- This is a device that amplifies light and gives quantum noise performance which is superior to standard optical amplifiers. The advantage is due to the fact that unlike standard travelling wave amplifiers, which always give a Poisson statistical distribution in the number of output photons, for a known number of input photons, the ideal photon number amplifier will give exactly N times as many output photons (no more, no less). Thus, it is a deterministic amplifier and adds less noise. Plus, it can serve as a wavelength converter.

Randy grew up in Dearborn Heights, Michigan, USA.

Randy has one brother and one sister. Here is a picture of his family , showing (from left to right) his oldest nephew (Shawn), mother, father, Randy, brother (Brian), sister (Janine), and youngest nephew (Eric).

Randy graduated from Riverside High School and later attended the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where he received his B.S. in electrical engineering. Here's evidence that Randy made a lot of noise while he was at Michigan. He then went to Caltech in Pasadena, CA where he got his M.S.E.E. and studied under Prof. Amnon Yariv . There he completed a Ph.D. on "Ultrashort and Ultrahigh-Repetition-Rate Pulse Generation through Passive Modelocking" involving experiments for generating sub-picosecond pulses of light, demonstrating lasers which turn off and on ~100 billion times per second, and determining the ultimate theoretical limitations of such devices. Randy demonstrated the first chip-only picosecond pulsed laser which could produce produce up-chirped, un-chirped, and down-chirped pulses by tuning a voltage. An up-chirped pulse is one in which the frequency rises during the pulse. Most people are familar with chirp as small birds usually make an up-chirped sound "tweet" while large birds tend to make a down-chirped sound "cawww". The laser pulses just do it in ~1 trillionth of a second.

On July 4, 1998, Randy married Christina Alvarez (now Christina Salvatore). This was probably Randy's best decision yet. We have a girl (Ashley) who is 4 years old and a boy (Grant) who is 5 months old.

Here are some earlier links of friends from Caltech:

Reg Lee, a grad student studying Vertical Cavity Semiconductor Lasers (VCSELs) and helpful in setting up my first home page.

Dan Provenzano, a grad student studying low-noise semiconductor lasers.

Matt McAdams, a grad student studying high-speed modulation of semiconductor lasers.

A picture of me with John Kitching in Las Vegas, taken by Xu. Dr. John is now working at NIST in Boulder, CO.

After being a postdoc at UCSB for 13 months, Randy had concluded that Santa Barbara is geographically on of the ideal spots in the U.S. Here's a picture of Santa Barbara. With the calm ocean, the peaceful mountains, the awesome weather, and the beautiful city, one finds it hard to wish for more. Now I visit when I get the chance. With an enormous number of trails in the area, mountain biking is among the best anywhere. A mountain bike link to the bike club with which I was riding.

Randy is also interested in stocks. He reviews numerous companies for potential investment and is most interested in the extreme value stocks for which nearly everyone else has little excitement. For 2009, his top 5 stocks of interest are: CHME, UVE, CKGT, ADGF, and ISNS. A link to information on these follows:

  • Stocks
  • for Mar 2009 - Mar 2010.

    Some other interesting places to jump to:

  • Optical Society of Amer.
  • U.S. Patent Office Searches
  • One of my adventures into the mountains resulted in my own Chumash Indian website.
  • which for some reason doesn't appear to link anymore.

    A few significant pictures:

  • A picture of my good friend Mike, my previous roomate from grad school -- This is Mike with his wife Lisa. Of course, I don't see too much of Mike now because Mike is busy in southern CA.
  • A group of friends on the shore north of Copenhagen in Denmark.
  • A picture of one of my old officemates, Kent. Kent was also known as the Swedish postdoc and is so good in tennis that I never want to play him.
  • A picture of my other old officemate Vijay hard at work. Vijay was the best 0% postdoc that we know.

    Randy's preferred email address is: randysal@alumni.caltech.edu


    You are visitor number: (Since August 31, 1996) --provided by Web-Counter

    Last updated March 19, 2009