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Proceedings Paper

Bacteriorhodopsin: an ideal material for optical processing
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Paper Abstract

Bacteriorhodopsin, a natural occuring photochromic protein present in the purple membrane of certain halophilic bacteria has been shown to posses unique optical properties. The ground state has a broad absorption band (bR) centred at 570 nm (light adapted bacteriorhodopsin) and a metastable state (M) centred at 412 nm with a thermal relaxtion time of 10 ms. The metastable can be stimulated to decay to the ground state through light in 200 ns. The thermal relaxation time can, however, be extended by five orders of magnitude through suitable chemical treatment of the purple membrane, without compromising the stimulated decay of 200 ns. At the same time, there is a concomitant change in the dipole moment accompanying trans to cis isomerization and. charge translocation across the purple membrane. Bacteriorhodopsin is also a highly nonlinear optical material with a large third-order nonlinearity. A nonlinear Kerr coefficient of 10-4 cm2 /W has been reported for this material, and new mutants are reported to possess even higher nonlinearities. This high nonlinerity enables the use of even fairly low- powered lasers to investigate nonlinear optical propagation. The time constant of the nonlinearity is on the order of a few milliseconds. We report in this talk applications of bacteriorhodopsin thin films for holographic storage, coherent-to- incoherent conversion, incoherent-to-coherent conversion, and contrast reversal of images.

Paper Details

Date Published: 2 January 1998
PDF: 7 pages
Proc. SPIE 3211, International Conference on Fiber Optics and Photonics: Selected Papers from Photonics India '96, (2 January 1998); doi: 10.1117/12.345366
Show Author Affiliations
P. S. Ramanujam, Risoe National Lab. (Denmark)
Lars Rene Lindvold, Risoe National Lab. (Denmark)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 3211:
International Conference on Fiber Optics and Photonics: Selected Papers from Photonics India '96

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