Microscopic optical buffering in a harmonic potential

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Abstract

In the early days of quantum mechanics, Schrödinger noticed that oscillations of a wave packet in a one-dimensional harmonic potential well are periodic and, in contrast to those in anharmonic potential wells, do not experience distortion over time. This original idea did not find applications up to now since an exact one-dimensional harmonic resonator does not exist in nature and has not been created artificially. However, an optical pulse propagating in a bottle microresonator (a dielectric cylinder with a nanoscale-high bump of the effective radius) can exactly imitate a quantum wave packet in the harmonic potential. Here, we propose a tuneable microresonator that can trap an optical pulse completely, hold it as long as the material losses permit, and release it without distortion. This result suggests the solution of the long standing problem of creating a microscopic optical buffer, the key element of the future optical signal processing devices.

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  • Microscopic optical buffering in a harmonic potential

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Original languageEnglish
Article number18569
Number of pages10
JournalScientific Reports
Volume5
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 22 Dec 2015

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article’s Creative Commons license, unless indicated otherwise in the credit line; if the material is not included under the Creative Commons license, users will need to obtain permission from the license holder to reproduce the material. To view a copy of this license, visit http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/ Supplementary data avaialbe on the journal website.

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