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Proceedings Paper

Catastrophic loss of mode discrimination in coupled cavity systems
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Paper Abstract

Semiconductor lasers subject to optical feedback are of both scientific and technological importance. The laser and external mirror form a compound cavity which can be modeled using a coupled cavity approach. Using this approach we have calculated the longitudinal mode frequencies and the associated mode lifetimes of all the modes in the system. We have found that for a narrow range of external cavity reflectivities, the mode lifetimes become almost degenerate. In this regime the mode lifetimes become highly sensitive to variations in the refractive index of the laser and external cavity reflectivities. Close inspection of this regime has revealed ever finer detail, suggesting a fractal structure to the mode solutions. The calculations have been undertaken in the 'cold cavity' limit and indicate a catastrophic loss of mode discrimination, even in a system with no inherent material gain. In the short cavity limit the external reflectivity required to induce the loss of mode discrimination varies as a function of external cavity round-trip time.

Paper Details

Date Published: 25 May 2004
PDF: 8 pages
Proc. SPIE 5468, Fluctuations and Noise in Photonics and Quantum Optics II, (25 May 2004); doi: 10.1117/12.544015
Show Author Affiliations
David E Perkins, Univ. of Wales, Bangor (United Kingdom)
Paul S Spencer, Univ. of Wales, Bangor (United Kingdom)
Iestyn Pierce, Univ. of Wales, Bangor (United Kingdom)
Paul Rees, Univ. of Wales, Bangor (United Kingdom)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 5468:
Fluctuations and Noise in Photonics and Quantum Optics II
Peter Heszler, Editor(s)

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