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Phys Rev Lett. 2008 Jan 25;100(3):033901. Epub 2008 Jan 23.

Combining directional light output and ultralow loss in deformed microdisks.

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Institut für Theoretische Physik, Universität Bremen, Bremen, Germany.


A drawback of optical modes in microdisk cavities is their isotropic light emission. Here we report a novel, robust, and general mechanism that results in highly directional light emission from high-quality modes. This surprising finding is explained by a combination of wave phenomena (wave localization along unstable periodic ray trajectories) and chaotic ray dynamics in open systems (escape along unstable manifolds) and applies even to microlasers operating in the common multimode regime. We demonstrate our novel mechanism for the limaçon cavity and find directional emission with narrow angular divergence for a significant range of geometries and material parameters.

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