solitons, optical solitons, spatial solitons, surface waves, discrete solitons, surface solitons
Surface waves exist along the interfaces between two different media and are known to display properties that have no analogue in continuous systems. In years past, they have been the subject of many studies in a diverse collection of scientific disciplines. In optics, one of the mechanisms through which optical surface waves can exist is material nonlinearity. Until recently, most of the activity in this area was focused on interfaces between continuous media but no successful experiments have been reported. However, the growing interest that nonlinear discrete optics has attracted in the last two decades has raised the question of whether nonlinear surface waves can exist in discrete optical systems. In this work, a detailed experimental study of linear and nonlinear optical wave propagation at the interface between a discrete one-dimensional Kerr-nonlinear system and a continuous medium (slab waveguide) as well as at the interface between two dissimilar waveguide lattices is presented. The major part of this dissertation is devoted to the first experimental observation of discrete surface solitons in AlGaAs Kerr-nonlinear arrays of weakly coupled waveguides. These nonlinear surface waves are found to localize in the channels at and near the boundary of the waveguide array. The key unique property of discrete surface solitons, namely the existence of a power threshold, is investigated in detail. The second part of this work deals with the linear light propagation properties at the interface between two dissimilar waveguide arrays (so-called waveguide array hetero-junction). The possibility of three different types of linear interface modes is theoretically predicted and the existence of one of them, namely the staggered/staggered mode, is confirmed experimentally. The last part of the dissertation is dedicated to the investigation of the nonlinear properties of AlGaAs waveguide array hetero-junctions. The predicted three different types of discrete hybrid surface solitons are analyzed theoretically. The experimental results on observation of in-phase/in-phase hybrid surface solitons localized at channels on either side of the interface are presented and different nature of their formation is discussed.
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Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)
College of Optics and Photonics
Optics and Photonics
Length of Campus-only Access
Doctoral Dissertation (Open Access)
Suntsov, Sergiy, "Discrete Surface Solitons" (2007). Electronic Theses and Dissertations. 3370.