Mazin Lab

Mazin Lab, led by Professor Ben Mazin, is a part of the Department of Physics at UCSB.  We are focused on using a unique detector technology called Microwave Kinetic Inductance Detectors (MKIDs) for astronomy, biophysics, and particle physics in the near infrared, optical, and ultraviolet. MKIDs allow us to determine the energy and arrival time of individual photons without read noise or dark current. The applications of this technology spans a wide range of vital research areas, including detecting Earth-like planets around nearby stars, determining the redshift of billions of galaxies, detecting light scalar dark matter, and imaging developing cells.

Top Left: A 20,440 pixel Optical/near-IR MKID Array.  Top Right: On-sky diffraction limited 950-1350 nm and SSD map from MEC of a companion to HIP 109427. Bottom Left:  A microscope image of a MKID.  Bottom Right: DARKNESS being mounted to the Palomar 200" Hale Telescope cass cage.


April, 2024: Graduate Student Aled Cuda won the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.

January, 2024: We have started a YouTube Channel!

April, 2023: Graduate Student Crystal Kim won the NSTGRO Fellowship, and graduate student Majid Mohammad won the NSF Graduate Research Fellowship.

March, 2023: The XKID instrument has been sucessfully deployed the the Clay Telescope in Chile.

April, 2021: Graduate Student Hawkins Clay received the NSTGRO fellowship.

December, 2020: The MEC instrument paper is now published in PASP. Press release here.

April, 2020: Mazin Lab undergraduate researcher Clarissa Rizzo was awarded an NSF Graduate Fellowship

March, 2020: Mazin Lab awarded a grant for exoplanet direct imaging technology from the Heising-Simons Foundation.

July, 2019: New Air and Space Magazine article on MKIDs  

April, 2019: Graduate Student Jenny Smith awarded the NASA Space Technology Research Fellowship  

March, 2019: Watch Professor Mazin's presentation at the Amazon MARS conference

March, 2019: Graduate Student Alex Walter accepted a NASA Postdoctoral Progream (NPP) Fellowship at JPL

April, 2018: DARKNESS commissioning paper published in PASP.  Press release here.

March, 2018: MEC is installed at the Subaru Telescope

August, 2017: Professor Ben Mazin has been awarded the Worster Chair in Experimental Physics

Office:  Broida Hall 2015H

Lab:  Broida Hall 3509

Phone/Fax: (805)893-3344


Department of Physics  

Bldg. 572 Room 1311          

University of California       

Santa Barbara, CA 93106 USA


Check out our YouTube channel! Mazin Lab shirts and mugs are available here: https://experimentalastro.etsy.com/