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Proceedings Paper

Analogy between the quantum phase transition and the polarization switching of vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers
Author(s): Tsu-Chiang Yen; Yu-Heng Wu; Yueh-Chen Li; Wang-Chuang Kuo
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Paper Abstract

The phase transition in the polarization switching (PS) of vertical-cavity surface-emitting lasers (VCSELs) was recently reported to be a second-order phase transition (SOPT). However, some features of this phase transition indicate that the VCSEL’s PS (VPS) is different from the traditional SOPTs. Most of the phase transition investigations of the laser employ the laser’s intensity as the order parameter. In Landau’s paradigm, that parameter evolutes from zero to non-zero values, or vice versa, during SOPTs, corresponding to a transition between a disordered phase and an ordered phase. Nevertheless, in the VPS, the laser’s intensity remains constant before and after the PS, revealing an order-to-order transition. Furthermore, the laser’s transverse modes cannot transfer to each other through continuous deformations in geometry. That feature attributes a topological characteristic to the laser’s transverse modes. The spatial coherence of the laser also implements a globally geometric characteristic to the laser’s output. Accordingly, there are two similarities between the VPS and quantum phase transitions (QPTs) with topological order. First, both of them belong to the orderto- order phase transitions. Second, in both transitions, two ground states are orthogonal, and are degenerate at the critical point. This paper investigated the analogy between the QPT with topological order and the VPS, exploring that the VPS has a potential to simulate the QPTs of other physical systems.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 May 2014
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 9134, Semiconductor Lasers and Laser Dynamics VI, 91341Z (2 May 2014); doi: 10.1117/12.2052041
Show Author Affiliations
Tsu-Chiang Yen, National Sun Yat-Sen Univ. (Taiwan)
Yu-Heng Wu, National Sun Yat-Sen Univ. (Taiwan)
Yueh-Chen Li, National Sun Yat-Sen Univ. (Taiwan)
Wang-Chuang Kuo, National Sun Yat-Sen Univ. (Taiwan)

Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 9134:
Semiconductor Lasers and Laser Dynamics VI
Krassimir Panajotov; Marc Sciamanna; Angel Valle; Rainer Michalzik, Editor(s)

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