Optically induced indirect photonic transitions in a slow light photonic crystal waveguide

Michel Castellanos Munoz*, Alexander Yu. Petrov, Liam O'Faolain, Juntao Li, Thomas F. Krauss, Manfred Eich

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

46 Citations (Scopus)
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We demonstrate indirect photonic transitions in a silicon slow light photonic crystal waveguide. The transitions are driven by an optically generated refractive index front that moves along the waveguide and interacts with a signal pulse copropagating in the structure. We experimentally confirm a theoretical model which indicates that the ratio of the frequency and wave vector shifts associated with the indirect photonic transition is identical to the propagation velocity of the refractive index front. The physical origin of the transitions achieved here is fundamentally different than in previously proposed refractive index modulation concepts with fixed temporal and spatial modulation frequencies; as here, the interaction with the refractive index front results in a Doppler-like signal frequency and wave vector shift. Consequently, the bandwidth over which perfect mode frequency and wave vector matching is achieved is not intrinsically limited by the shape of the photonic bands, and tuning of the indirect photonic transitions is possible without any need for geometrical modifications of the structure. Our device is genuinely nonreciprocal, as it provides different frequency shifts for co- and counterpropagating signal and index fronts.

Original languageEnglish
Article number053904
Number of pages5
JournalPhysical Review Letters
Issue number5
Early online date6 Feb 2014
Publication statusPublished - 7 Feb 2014


  • Electromagnetic-waves
  • Ionization front
  • Silicon
  • Conversion


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