Nonlinear periodic photonic structures offer unique opportunities for manipulating the flow of light by exploiting the interplay between nonlinearity and the discreteness of periodic systems. To fully explore the rich physics and technological potential of periodic and nonlinear optical media, it is desirable to identify accessible experimental platforms that combine the advantages of high-quality fabricated structures with the attractiveness of tunable and strongly nonlinear materials for light control. In this work we suggest to use liquid-filled photonic crystal fibers (PCFs) for the study of discrete and nonlinear light propagation in extended
two-dimensional periodic systems. We experimentally demonstrate strongly tunable beam diffraction in a triangular waveguide array created by infiltration of a high index liquid into the cladding holes of a standard PCF, and employ the thermal nonlinearity of the liquid to achieve beam self-defocusing at higher light intensity. Based on the observed effects we devise a compact all-optical power limiter device with tunable characteristics. The use of commercially available PCFs in combination with liquid infiltration avoids the need for specialized high-precision fabrication procedures, and provides high tunability and nonlinearity at moderate laser powers while taking advantage of a compact experimental setup. The increasingly broad range of PCF structures available could stimulate further efforts in applying them in discrete nonlinear optics and all-optical devices. The long propagation lengths accessible in fiber-based discrete systems could even allow for experimental studies of combined spatial and temporal nonlinear effects and thus pave the road for future demonstrations of spatiotemporal control of light.
|Conference||SPIE: Microelectronics, MEMS and Nanotechnology 2007|
|Period||04/12/2007 → 07/12/2007|