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Nonlinear Susceptibility in Glass Points to Integrated Devices

Photonics Spectra
Feb 2007
Breck Hitz

Amorphous glasses can exhibit second-order susceptibilities if the material’s inversion symmetry is broken by treatments such as poling or electron-beam irradiation. Recent experiments have shown that chalcohalide glasses, in particular, may have sufficient second-order nonlinearity to eliminate the need for expensive nonlinear crystals, and to integrate frequency conversion and electro-optic modulation directly into optical fibers and planar waveguides.

The experiments, reported by scientists at East China University of Science and Technology in Shanghai and at Kyoto University in Japan, were the first to create a clear second-harmonic wave in chalcohalide glasses containing large amounts of alkali ions. The scientists polled the ∼millimeter-thick samples by clamping them between electrodes and applying voltages of several hundred volts per millimeter.

Optics Letters, Dec. 1, 2006, pp. 3492-3494.


GLOSSARY
photonics
The technology of generating and harnessing light and other forms of radiant energy whose quantum unit is the photon. The science includes light emission, transmission, deflection, amplification and detection by optical components and instruments, lasers and other light sources, fiber optics, electro-optical instrumentation, related hardware and electronics, and sophisticated systems. The range of applications of photonics extends from energy generation to detection to communications and...
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