Tien Khee Ng

Laboratory Manager
Senior Research Scientist  |  Senior Member of IEEE  |  Senior Member of The Optical Society (OSA)


Tien Khee is currently researching into molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) grown group-III nitride based quantum structures for light-emitting applications at KAUST. He has authored, co-authored and delivered more than 200 journal articles, invited talks, and conference articles receiving over 1500 citations. He is the center manager and one of the co-principal investigators for KACST Technology Innovation Center (TIC) for Solid State lighting at KAUST. He received his Ph.D. in electrical and electronics engineering from Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore, investigating on molecular beam epitaxy (MBE) grown small bandgap nitride semiconductor. His M.Eng. research in the same laboratory focused on electron cyclotron resonance plasma etching of As-based and P-based III-V semiconductor for eventual applications in heterojunction bipolar transistors. Serving the scientific community, he contributed as reviewers for various international journals, such as:
  • ACS Nano Letters
  • ACS Advanced Functional Materials
  • Scientific Reports
  • RSC Nanoscale
  • Applied Nanoscience
  • Journal of the Electrochemical Society
  • Journal of Crystal Growth
  • Journal of Applied Physics
  • Nanotechnology
  • Photonics Technology Letters
  • Photonics Journal
  • Optics Letters
  • Superlattices and Microstructures
  • Applied Physics Letters
As a senior research scientist, he co-advises Ph.D. / Masters students working on MBE-grown 2D quantum well and 3D nanowires emitters for broad gain, short reach communication NIR laser diodes, low polarization field nitride LEDs and laser diodes, laser-based smart solid-state lighting, and emitters epitaxy transfer onto conductive and/or flexible substrates. The long-term research goal targets the realization of narrow linewidth emitters, and wide-band nitride emitters spanning UV-blue-far red-NIR wavelengths.

As the manager of the photonics laboratory, he involved in the early establishment of the laboratory, and currently overseeing new capability establishment, laboratory operational continuity, as well as internal and external research collaboration. He was also involved as a co-mentor for the Saudi-RSI Summer Internship Program (2011 and 2013) in KAUST upon which one of the high school intern received 3 S-RSI awards, published 1 IEEE HONET’2011 conference paper and co-authored a journal paper.

Prior to this in 2007-2009, he embarked upon a research fellow position at NTU conducting research into MBE grown GaAs nanowires, quantum-dots structures and dilute-nitride-antimonide solar cells using SiGe- and Si-based heterogeneous substrates.

Previously in 2004-2006, he worked as an engineer for Tinggi Technologies, a start-up company in Singapore designing and fabricating high power GaN blue LEDs on highly conductive substrates. Tien Khee later served as member of technical staff and as thin film process manager in the same company.

Research Interests

  • Molecular beam epitaxy grown group-III nitride heterostructures for solid state lighting applications
  • Quantum dash broad band emitters
  • III-V-based quantum structures and silicon-based optical elements and for photonic integrated circuit applications

Selected Publications

Highlight of selected research articles (over 100 journal articles) in underwater optical wireless communications, lasers and superluminescent devices, nanowires light-emitting diodes on a new metal platform, novel 4D imaging characterization of the effect of passivation on nanowires’ surface-states, materials and devices in the UV-Visible-near-infrared.

  1. (Editorial) Tien Khee Ng, and Jianchang Yan, "Special Section Guest Editorial: Semiconductor UV Photonics", Journal of Nanophotonics, 12(4), 043501 (2018).
  2. (Review Article) Hassan M. Oubei, Chao Shen, Abla Kammoun, Emna Zedini, Ki-Hong Park, Xiaobin Sun, Guangyu Liu, Chun Hong Kang, Tien Khee Ng, Mohamed-Slim Alouini, and Boon S. Ooi, "Light based underwater wireless communications", Japanese Journal of Applied Physics, accepted (2018).
  3. (Review Article) Mohd Sharizal Alias, Malleswararao Tangi, Jorge A. Holguin-Lerma, Mohammad Khaled Shakfa, Edgars Stegenburgs, Abdullah A. Alatawi, Islam Ashry, Ram Chandra Subedi, Davide Priante, Tien Khee Ng, Boon S. Ooi, "Review of nanophotonics approaches using nanostructures and nanofabrication for III-nitrides UV photonic devices", Journal of Nanophotonics, accepted (2018).
  4. Chao Zhao#, Tien Khee Ng#, Nini Wei, Aditya Prabaswara, Mohd Sharizal Alias, Bilal Janjua, Chao Shen, and Boon S. Ooi, "Quantum-disks-in-Nanowires on Bulk-Metal Substrates for High-power Light-emitters", Nano Letters, 16 (2), pp. 1056-1063 (2016). # Equal contribution authors.
  5. Chao Zhao#, Tien Khee Ng#, Rami T. ElAfandy, Aditya Prabaswara, Giuseppe Bernardo Consiglio, Idris A. Ajia, Iman S. Roqan, Bilal Janjua, Chao Shen, Jessica Eid, Ahmed Y. Alyamani, Munir M. El-Desouki, and Boon S. Ooi, “Droop-Free, Reliable, and High-Power InGaN/GaN Nanowire Light-Emitting Diodes for Monolithic Metal-Optoelectronics”, Nano Letters, 16(7), pp. 4616-4623 (2016). # Equal contribution authors.
  6. Mohamed Ebaid, Davide Priante, Guangyu Liu, Chao Zhao, Mohd Sharizal Alias, Ulrich Buttner, Tien Khee Ng, Tayirjan Taylor Isimjan, Hicham Idriss, and Boon S. Ooi, Unbiased photocatalytic hydrogen generation from pure water on stable Ir-treated In0.33Ga0.67N nanorods, Nano Energy, 37, 158-167 (2017).
    • (Articles 3-5) The first demonstration of facile formation of ultra-long-wavelength nanowires-LEDs on bulk metal that enhances light extraction, lowers resistance, and enhances light extraction in single MBE growth run; and utilization of the semiconductor-nanowires/metal technology platform for hydrogen fuel generation. Patent applications submitted.
  7. Chao Zhao, Tien Khee Ng, Aditya Prabaswara, Michele Conroy, Shafat Jahangir, Thomas Frost, John O'Connell, Justin D. Holmes, Peter J. Parbrook, Pallab Bhattacharya, and Boon S. Ooi", An enhanced surface passivation effect in InGaN/GaN disk-in-nanowire light emitting diodes for mitigating Shockley–Read–Hall recombination", Nanoscale, 7, 16658-16665 (2015).
  8. Riya Bose, Jingya Sun, Jafar I. Khan, Basamat S. Shaheen, Aniruddha Adhikari, Tien Khee Ng, Victor M. Burlakov, Manas R. Parida, Davide Priante, Alain Goriely, Boon S. Ooi, Osman M. Bakr, and Omar F. Mohammed, "Spatial and Temporal Imaging of Energy Loss and Carrier Diffusion in InGaN Nanowires using Scanning Ultrafast Electron Microscopy", Advanced Materials, (2016).
  9. Jafar I. Khan, Aniruddha Adhikari, Jingya Sun, Davide Priante, Riya Bose, Basamat S. Shaheen, Chao Zhao, Tien Khee Ng, Osman M. Bakr, Boon S. Ooi, Omar F. Mohammed, "Enhanced Optoelectronic Performance of a Passivated Nanowire-based Device: Key Information from Real-space Imaging using 4D Electron Microscopy", Small (2016).
    • Articles 6-8: These 3 articles showcase the first demonstration of nitride-nanowires optical device improvement by facile chemical-passivation of nanowires, and confirmation of origin of device improvement (mitigated the effect of Shockley-Read-Hall non-radiative recombination) using advanced spectroscopy with femtosecond temporal resolution, and nanometer spatial resolution.
  10. Chao Shen, Tien Khee Ng, John T. Leonard, Arash Pourhashemi, Hassan M. Oubei, Mohd S. Alias, Shuji Nakamura, Steven P. DenBaars, James S. Speck, Ahmed Y. Alyamani, Munir M. Eldesouki, and Boon S. Ooi, “High-modulation-efficiency, integrated waveguide modulator-laser diode at 448 nm”, ACS Photonics (2016).
    • The first low-power, gigahertz bandwidth waveguide-modulator seamlessly integrated on semipolar (20/2/1) laser diodes.
  11. Chao Shen, Tien Khee Ng, Changmin Lee, Shuji Nakamura, James S. Speck, Steven P. DenBaars, Ahmed Y. Alyamani, Munir M. El-Desouki, and Boon S. Ooi, "Semipolar InGaN quantum-well laser diode with integrated amplifier for visible light communications", Optics Express, 26(6), A219-A226 (2018).
  12. Chao Shen, Changmin Lee, Edgars Stegenburgs, Jorge Holguin Lerma, Tien Khee Ng, Shuji Nakamura, Steven P. DenBaars, Ahmed Y. Alyamani, Munir M. El-Desouki, and Boon S. Ooi, "Semipolar III-nitride quantum well waveguide photodetector integrated with laser diode for on-chip photonic system", Applied Physics Express, 10(4), 042201, 1-3 (2017).
  13. Chao Shen, Tien Khee Ng, John T. Leonard, Arash Pourhashemi, Shuji Nakamure, Steven P. DenBaars, James S. Speck, Ahmed Y. Alyamani, Munir M. El-desouki, and Boon S. Ooi, "High-brightness semipolar (20/2/1) blue InGaN/GaN superluminescent diodes for droop-free solid-state lighting and visible-light communications" Optics Letters (2016).
    • Article 10-12: The first demonstration of semipolar laser diodes with integrated amplifier or waveguide photodetector. High-power, > 700-MHz modulation-bandwidth superluminescent-diode was also demonstrated for efficiency-droop-free, and speckle-free white laser illumination and communication.
  14. Hassan M. Oubei, Jose R. Duran, Bilal Janjua, Huai-Yung Wang, Cheng-Ting Tsai, Yu-Cheih Chi, Tien Khee Ng, Hao-Chung Kuo, Jr-Hau He, Mohamed-Slim Alouini, Gong-Ru Lin, and Boon S. Ooi, “4.8 Gbit/s 16-QAM-OFDM transmission based on compact 450-nm laser for underwater wireless optical communication”, Optics Express, 23(18), 23302-23309 (2015); Nature Photonics 9, 707 (2015).
  15. Hassan Makine Oubei, Changping Li, Ki-Hong Park, Tien Khee Ng, Mohamed-Slim Alouini, and Boon S. Ooi, “2.3 Gbit/s underwater wireless optical communications using directly modulated 520 nm laser diode”, Optics Express, 23(16), 20743-20748 (2015).
    • Article 13-14: Article 13 was featured in Nature Photonics article "Optical communications: Underwater link”: record 4.8 Gbit/s transmission rate underwater optical communications (UWOC) for deep sea exploration and sensing, for eventual integration with the existing sonar-based communication system. Article 11 provides an alternate straightforward On/Off keying scheme in providing high bit-rate transmission in coastal water using green (520-nm) laser.
  16. Bilal Janjua, Hassan M. Oubei, Jose R. Durán Retamal, Tien Khee Ng, Cheng-Ting Tsai, Huai-Yung Wang, Yu-Chieh Chi, Hao-Chung Kuo, Gong-Ru Lin, Jr-Hau He, and Boon S. Ooi, “Going beyond 4 Gbps data rate by employing RGB laser diodes for visible light communication”, Optics Express, 23(14), 18746-18753 (2015).
    • Mercury-free green light-source development. The red-green-blue lasers are used for simultaneous implementation of solid-state lighting and >4 Gbit/s visible light communications.
  17. D. Priante, I. Dursun, M. S. Alias, D. Shi, V. A. Melnikov, T. K. Ng, O. F. Mohammed, O. M. Bakr, and B. S. Ooi, “The recombination mechanisms leading to amplified spontaneous emission at the true-green wavelength in CH3NH3PbBr3 perovskites”, Applied Physics Letters, 106, 081902 (2015).
    • Applied Physics Letters is a journal in the Nature Index list. The article provides the physical explanations of the amplified spontaneous emission mechanisms in optically pumped MAPbBr3 perovskite device emitting at the true-green, eye-sensitive wavelength of 555 nm. Top 25 Most-download APL article in 2015.
  18. Mohammed Zahed Mustafa Khan, Tien Khee Ng, and Boon S. Ooi, “Self-assembled InAs/InP quantum dots and quantum dashes: Material structures and devices”, Progress in Quantum Electronics, 38(6), 237-313 (2014).
    • Review paper on physical insights, device characterization, and optical telecommunications applications of quantum dash based lasers and superluminescent diode.


  • 2005 -PhD Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore
  • 2001 -M.Eng Electrical and Electronics Engineering, Nanyang Technological University (NTU), Singapore

Professional Profile

  • Jun 2016 – present        : Senior Research Scientist, Photonics Laboratory, KAUST, KSA
  • Aug 2012 – Jun 2016     Research Scientist, Photonics Laboratory, KAUST, KSA
  • Oct 2009 – Jul 2012       : Assistant Research Scientist, Photonics Laboratory, KAUST, KSA
  • Jan 2007 – Aug 2009     : Research Fellow, Cleanroom & Characterization Laboratory, NTU, Singapore
  • Aug 2004 – Nov 2006    : Member of Technical Staff & Process Manager, Tinggi Technologies, Singapore
  • July 2002 – July 2004    : Singapore-MIT Research Associate, Cleanroom & Characterization Lab., NTU, Singapore
  • Jun 97 – Nov 98             : Test Engineer, Hewlett-Packard, Singapore

Scientific and Professional Memberships

  • Senior Member of IEEE (Photonics Society, and Electron Devices Society), Senior Member of The Optical Society (OSA)

KAUST Affiliations

Computer, Electrical, and Mathematical Sciences and Engineering | Electrical Engineering