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Opt Lett. 2005 Oct 1;30(19):2575-7.

Fast bistable all-optical switch and memory on a silicon photonic crystal on-chip.

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  • 1NTT Basic Research Laboratories, NTT Corporation, 3-1, Morinosato Wakamiya Atsugi-shi, Kanagawa 243-0198, Japan.


We demonstrate extremely low-power all-optical bistability by utilizing silicon photonic crystal nanocavities, based on the plasma effect of carriers generated by two-photon absorption. Owing to the high quality factor and the small volume of the nanocavities, the photon density inside the cavity becomes extremely high, which leads to a large reduction in operation power. Optical bistable operation in a single nanocavity permits optical read-write memory operation, which opens the possibility of an integrated optical logic circuit on a single chip, based on photonic crystals. The demonstrated bistable threshold power is 0.4 mW with a set pulse energy of 74 fJ, at a switching speed of <100 ps.

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