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CPA-laser effect and exceptional points in PT-symmetric multilayer structures

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posted on 2023-11-30, 18:49 authored by Denis Novitsky
The simultaneous existence of coherent perfect absorption (CPA) and lasing is one of the most intriguing features of non-Hermitian photonics. However, the link between CPA lasing and PT symmetry breaking at the exceptional point (EP) needs clarification. In this paper, we study the manifestations of the CPA-laser effect in a PT-symmetric multilayer loss-gain structure using both the transfer-matrix method and numerical simulations of the Maxwell-Bloch equations. We show that the maximal contrast between absorption and amplification at different phase relations between the input waves is reached well below the EP and therefore is not connected to true lasing. In this regime, there is a good qualitative agreement between both computational approaches. Above the EP, the system demonstrates lasing regardless of the parameters of the input waves. Thus, the maximal contrast between the absorption and amplification rather corresponds to the CPA amplifier than to the CPA laser.

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