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Opt Lett. 2004 Oct 15;29(20):2387-9.

Optical bistability on a silicon chip.

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  • 1School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Cornell University, 411 Phillips Hall, Ithaca, New York 14853, USA.


We demonstrate, for the first time to our knowledge, optical bistability on a highly integrated silicon device, using a 5-microm-radius ring resonator. The strong light-confinement nature of the resonator induces nonlinear optical response with low pump power. We show that the optical bistability allows all-optical functionalities, such as switching and memory with microsecond time response and a modulation depth of 10 dB, driven by pump power as low as 45 microW. Silicon optical bistability relies on a fast thermal nonlinear optical effect presenting a 500-kHz modulation bandwidth.

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