Forschungs- & Entwicklungsinformationsdienst der Gemeinschaft - CORDIS

First worldwide demonstration of the amplifying waveguide optical isolator concept

At the start of the ISOLASER project, the amplifying waveguide optical isolator was only a theoretical idea and there was no evidence that this was a viable concept. Following the development of tensile strained multi-quantum well material providing TM-selective gain, a first isolator demonstrator was designed, fabricated and characterized.

The magneto-optic metal used on this demonstrator was Co90Fe10. On this device we were able to demonstrate, for the first time worldwide, an amplifying waveguide optical isolator.

The demonstration - first qualitative and later quantitative - was realized through examination of the influence of a magnetic field on the amplified spontaneous light (ASE) emitted by the device. It was found that a change in the magnetization of the ferromagnetic metal film results in a proportional change in TM-polarized optical output power. Furthermore, the TE-polarized emission remains unaffected by the magnetic field. This is an unambiguous proof that the observed effect is the transverse magneto-optic Kerr effect, as this influences only the TM-mode of the optical waveguide.

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