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'Microring' device could aid in future optical technologies
Date:10/19/2011

rve as a competing technology to a special type of laser called a mode-locked laser, which generates many frequencies and short pulses. One advantage of the microrings is that they can be very small."

The laser light undergoes "nonlinear interaction" while inside the microring, generating a comb of new frequencies that is emitted out of the device through another optical fiber.

"The nonlinearity is critical to the generation of the comb," said doctoral student Fahmida Ferdous. "With the nonlinearity we obtain a comb of many frequencies, including the original one, and the rest are new ones generated in the microring."

Findings are detailed in a research paper appearing online this month in the journal Nature Photonics. The paper is scheduled for publication in the Dec. 11 issue.

Although other researchers previously have demonstrated the comb-generation technique, the team is the first to process the frequencies using "optical arbitrary waveform technology," pioneered by Purdue researchers led by Weiner. The researchers were able to control the amplitude and phase of each spectral line, learning that there are two types of combs - "highly coherent" and "partially coherent" - opening up new avenues to study the physics of the process.

"In future investigations, the ability to extract the phase of individual comb lines may furnish clues into the physics of the comb-generation process," Ferdous said. "Future work will include efforts to create devices that have the proper frequency for commercial applications."


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Contact: Emil Venere
venere@purdue.edu
765-494-4709
Purdue University
Source:Eurekalert  

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