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Phys Rev Lett. 2006 Aug 25;97(8):083901. Epub 2006 Aug 23.

Observation of surface gap solitons in semi-infinite waveguide arrays.

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  • 1Nonlinear Physics Centre, Centre for Ultrahigh-Bandwidth Devices for Optical Systems (CUDOS), Research School of Physical Sciences and Engineering, Australian National University, Canberra, Australia.


We report on the observation of surface gap solitons found to exist at the interface between uniform and periodic dielectric media with defocusing nonlinearity. We demonstrate strong self-trapping at the edge of a LiNbO3 waveguide array and the formation of staggered surface solitons with propagation constant inside the first photonic band gap. We study the crossover between linear repulsion and nonlinear attraction at the surface, revealing the mechanism of nonlinearity-mediated stabilization of the surface gap modes.

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