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Zener tunneling of light in an optical superlattice

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  26 February 2011

Mher Ghulinyan
Affiliation:
INFM and Dipartimento di Fisica, University of Trento, Italy
Zeno Gaburro
Affiliation:
INFM and Dipartimento di Fisica, University of Trento, Italy
Lorenzo Pavesi
Affiliation:
INFM and Dipartimento di Fisica, University of Trento, Italy
Claudio J. Oton
Affiliation:
Departamento de Fisica Basica, University of La Laguna, Tenerife, Spain
Costanza Toninelli
Affiliation:
INFM & European Laboratory for Nonlinear Spectroscopy, Florence, Italy
Diederik S. Wiersma
Affiliation:
INFM & European Laboratory for Nonlinear Spectroscopy, Florence, Italy
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Abstract

We report on the observation of resonant Zener tunnelling of light waves in an optical superlattice. The one dimensional (1D) structures are made in free-standing porous silicon and are designed specifically to exhibit two photonic minibands. A controlled optical path gradient has been maintained over the sample thickness which resulted in tilting of photonic minibands and formation of optical Wannier-Stark ladders. At a certain value of optical gradient the two minibands couple within the extension of the structure and a resonant tunnelling channel through the superlattice forms, resulting in a very high transmission peak. Ultrafast time resolved transmission experiments were performed: excitation of the Wannier-Stark states causes the appearance of photonic Bloch oscillations, which are strongly damped when Zener tunneling modes are excited. The observed phenomenon is the optical analogue of resonant Zener tunnelling in an electronic superlattice.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © Materials Research Society 2005

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References

REFERENCES

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