Scientists demonstrate laser with controlled polarizationApril 13th, 2009 - 4:13 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, April 13 (ANI): A team of scientists has demonstrated, for the first time, lasers in which the direction of oscillation of the emitted radiation, known as polarization, can be designed and controlled at will.
The demonstration was made by applied scientists at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS), in collaboration with researchers from Hamamatsu Photonics in Hamamatsu City, Japan.
The innovation opens the door to a wide range of applications in photonics and communications.
“Polarization is one of the key features defining a laser beam. Controlling it represents an important new step towards beam engineering of lasers with unprecedented flexibility, tailored for specific applications,” explained graduate student Federico Capasso.
“The novelty of our approach is that instead of being conducted externally, which requires bulky and expensive optical components, manipulation of the beam polarization is achieved by directly integrating the polarizer on the laser facet,” he added.
“This compact solution is applicable to semiconductor lasers and other solid-state lasers, all the way from communication wavelengths to the mid-infrared and Terahertz spectrum,” he further added.
Light sources with a desirable polarization state are useful for a wide variety of applications.
For example, satellite communications use two orthogonal polarizations to double the capacity of the channel; circularly-polarized light sources are necessary to detect certain biomolecules; and laser sources with a variety of polarization states have relevance for quantum cryptography.
To achieve the results, the researchers sculpted a metallic structure, dubbed a plasmonic polarizer directly on the facet of a quantum cascade (QC) laser.
The QC laser emitted at a wavelength of ten microns (in the invisible part of the spectrum known as the mid-infrared where the atmosphere is transparent).
The team was able to control the state of polarization by generating both linearly polarized light along an arbitrary direction and circularly polarized light. (ANI)
- Ultrafast lasers make mini X-ray device possible - Jun 08, 2012
- Scientists demonstrate highly directional semiconductor lasers for the first time - Jul 28, 2008
- Laser-based missile defense for helicopters on the anvil - Sep 03, 2010
- New 'Spaser' technology to fuel future nano-technologies - Jan 13, 2011
- New laser that generates more light than heat - Jan 12, 2010
- Scientists make first perovskite-based superlens for the infrared - Mar 30, 2011
- New kind of optical fiber paves way for improved surgical and medical lasers - Feb 26, 2011
- Growing nanolasers on silicon paves way for on-chip photonics - Feb 07, 2011
- New switching device to help build an ultrafast quantum Internet - Mar 11, 2011
- Engineers find nanolasers for faster microprocessors - Feb 07, 2011
- Quantum computers come a step closer to reality - Sep 30, 2009
- World's most efficient single photon detector developed - Apr 16, 2010
- Packed 'sea of photons' could shrink the size of electronic devices - Nov 25, 2010
- Miniature lasers could open the door to new age of the Internet - Mar 16, 2011
- Physicists construct quantum toy houses - Feb 15, 2010
Tags: beam polarization, biomolecules, compact solution, hamamatsu city, hamamatsu photonics, harvard school, laser sources, light sources, metallic structure, optical components, polarization state, polarization states, polarizer, qc laser, quantum cascade, quantum cryptography, satellite communications, semiconductor lasers, solid state lasers, unprecedented flexibility