Two closely coupled lasers, dynamics & applications

Thumbnail Image
Clerkin, Eoin
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
University College Cork
Published Version
Research Projects
Organizational Units
Journal Issue
The dynamics of two mutually coupled identical single-mode semi-conductor lasers are theoretically investigated. For small separation and large coupling between the lasers, symmetry-broken one-colour states are shown to be stable. In this case the light output of the lasers have significantly different intensities whilst at the same time the lasers are locked to a single common frequency. For intermediate coupling we observe stable two-colour states, where both single-mode lasers lase simultaneously at two optical frequencies which are separated by up to 150 GHz. For low coupling but possibly large separation, the frequency of the relaxation oscillations of the freerunning lasers defines the dynamics. Chaotic and quasi-periodic states are identified and shown to be stable. For weak coupling undamped relaxation oscillations dominate where each laser is locked to three or more odd number of colours spaced by the relaxation oscillation frequency. It is shown that the instabilities that lead to these states are directly connected to the two colour mechanism where the change in the number of optical colours due to a change in the plane of oscillation. At initial coupling, in-phase and anti-phase one colour states are shown to emerge from “on” uncoupled lasers using a perturbation method. Similarly symmetry-broken one-colour states come from considering one free-running laser initially “on” and the other laser initially “off”. The mechanism that leads to a bi-stability between in-phase and anti-phase one-colour states is understood. Due to an equivariant phase space symmetry of being able to exchange the identical lasers, a symmetric and symmetry-broken variant of all states mentioned above exists and is shown to be stable. Using a five dimensional model we identify the bifurcation structure which is responsible for the appearance of symmetric and symmetry-broken one-colour, symmetric and symmetry-broken two-colour, symmetric and symmetry-broken undamped relaxation oscillations, symmetric and symmetry-broken quasi-periodic, and symmetric and symmetry-broken chaotic states. As symmetry-broken states always exist in pairs, they naturally give rise to bi-stability. Several of these states show multistabilities between symmetric and symmetry-broken variants and among states. Three memory elements on the basis of bi-stabilities in one and two colour states for two coupled single-mode lasers are proposed. The switching performance of selected designs of optical memory elements is studied numerically.
Mutually coupled lasers , Laser dynamics , Semiconductor lasers , Laser diodes , Closely coupled lasers , Weakly coupled lasers
Clerkin, E. 2014. Two closely coupled lasers, dynamics & applications. PhD Thesis, University College Cork.