IJUC HomeIssue Contents

Fourier Transform Holographic Associative Processors Based on Bacteriorhodopsin
Jordan A. Greco, Nicole L. Wagner, and Robert R. Birge

We explore the use of the light-transducing protein, bacteriorhodopsin, in optical associative memories and processors. This protein has long been known as an excellent material for photonic applications due to inherent photochemical efficiency and stability. Here, we investigate aspects of complex Fourier association using computer simulations and relate the results to the holographic properties of bacteriorhodopsin-based thin films. For both real-time computing and long-term data storage applications, genetic optimization is necessary to enhance the kinetics and quantum efficiency of the photochemical formation of the blue-shifted intermediates (the M and Q states) of the bacteriorhodopsin photocycle. Methods in genetic engineering and directed evolution are presented briefly, in addition to a discussion on the design, capabilities, and limitations of protein-based optical associative processors.

Keywords: Bacteriorhodopsin, holography, associative memory, bioelectronics, protein-based processors, biomimetics, complex Fourier association, photochromism, directed evolution

Full Text (IP)