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Chalcogenide glasses are attracting significant attention thanks to their mid-infrared transparency and highly nonlinear properties. Nadya Anscombe talks to Dan Hewak from the University of Southampton in the UK.
The use of intense ultrafast terahertz pulses to gate superconductivity not only provides insights into charge transport in such materials but may also lead to new forms of data switching, explains Andrea Cavalleri.
Researchers present a waveform synthesis scheme that coherently multiplexes the outputs from two broadband optical parametric chirped-pulse amplifiers. The technique provides control at the sub-cycle scale and generates high-energy ultrashort waveforms for use in strong-field physics experiments.
Researchers report a colloidal quantum-dot solar cell that features two junctions, each designed to absorb and convert different spectral bands of light within the solar spectrum. The device offers a power conversion efficiency of 4.2% and an open circuit voltage of 1.06 V.
Scientists demonstrate that strong single-cycle terahertz pulses can switch off interlayer superconductivity in a cuprate superconductor while leaving in-plane superconductivity unaltered. The effect may prove useful for studying and controlling the behaviour of future ultrafast nanoelectronics.
Researchers show that thin films containing HgTe quantum dots with diameters of around 10 nm exhibit a photoresponse in the mid-infrared that extends to wavelengths as long as 5 µm. Such films could become the basis of a new form of low-cost mid-infrared photodetector.
Researchers have fired ultracold-atom Bose–Einstein condensates towards the submicrometre-featured potentials formed by the optical near-fields of surface plasmons. The strength and structural dependence of the optical near-fields were determined from the reflection of cold atoms. It is hoped that the work paves the way towards plasmonic guiding and the manipulation of cold atoms.
Researchers experimentally demonstrate that light propagating through a path-averaged zero-index dielectric medium can have zero phase delay, despite a non-zero physical path length. The medium is a superlattice consisting of layers of negative-refractive-index dielectric photonic crystals and positive-refractive-index homogeneous dielectric media.
India has long been active in the field of photonics, dating back to famous scientists such as Raman and Bose. Today, India is home to numerous research groups and telecommunications companies that own a sizeable amount of the fibre-optic links installed around the globe.
Wavelength-tunable ultraviolet light sources are required for a wide range of applications, but are typically difficult to manufacture and operate. A simple gas-filled optical fibre that performs efficient frequency conversion from the infrared to the deep-ultraviolet could be a promising answer.
A superlattice comprising alternating layers of negative-refractive-index photonic crystals and positive-refractive-index dielectric media has been shown to exhibit an effective refractive index of zero. Experiments show that light passing through such a material experiences no phase shift.
The interaction between atoms in a Bose–Einstein condensate and plasmon-enhanced fields is a step towards the goal of realizing hybrid atom–polariton systems for tasks in quantum information processing.
Photonic quasicrystals are specially designed aperiodic materials that possess long-range order and are capable of transmitting light. Contrary to intuition, introducing disorder can be used to enhance the propagation of light through such labyrinth structures.
The controlled 'catch and release' of individual quantum-information-carrying photons is an important ingredient for achieving scalable quantum networking. Recently, researchers at the Max Planck Institute of Quantum Optics succeeded in this task in two separate systems.
Over the past ten years, Crystal Fiber, now part of NKT Photonics, has been busy commercializing photonic crystal fibre. Nadya Anscombe finds out about the evolution of the technology and its applications.
Twisting and microforming an optical fibre provides it with unique chiral properties that are useful for polarization control, harsh-environment sensing and dense multichannel coupling to photonic integrated circuits.