The realization of photonics technology rests on the development of multifunctional materials, which simultaneously satisfy many functional requirements. Towards this goal, we present here, the preparation of novel multifunctional nanostructured composites using the sol-gel process. Two specific applications: optical limiting, and two-photon pumped lasing in these composite materials will be discussed.
We have been able to dope two optical limiting materials in a single bulk and retain the optical limiting effects at each of their characteristic wavelengths. The materials selected for this purpose were C60 which shows optical limiting behavior at a wavelength of 532 nm and bisbenzothiazole 3,4-didecyloxy thiophene (BBTDOT) which exhibits a strong two-photon absorption induced optical limiting at 800 nm. The resulting glass acts as a multi-wavelength optical limiter.
In addition, we present results of two-photon pumped upconverted lasing at 600 nm in a nanostructured composite glass doped with a new dye, trans-4-[P-(N-ethyl-Nhydroxylethylamino) styryl]-N-methylpyridinium tetraphenylborate (ASPT). The pump source was a Q-switched Nd:YAG laser producing 1064 nm pulses of ˜ 10 ns duration.