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Electrically pumped photonic integrated soliton microcomb

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posted on 2023-11-30, 06:25 authored by Arslan S. Raja, Andrey S. Voloshin, Hairun Guo, Sofya E. Agafonova, Junqiu Liu, Alexander S. Gorodnitskiy, Maxim Karpov, Nikolay G. Pavlov, Erwan Lucas, Ramzil R. Galiev, Artem E. Shitikov, John D. Jost, Michael L. Gorodetsky, Tobias J. Kippenberg
Optical frequency combs have revolutionized frequency metrology and timekeeping, and can be used in a wide range of optical technologies. Advances are under way that allow dramatic miniaturization of optical frequency combs using Kerr nonlinear optical microresonators, where broadband and coherent optical frequency combs can be generated from a continuous wave laser. Such `microcombs', provide a broad bandwidth with low power consumption, unprecedented form factor, wafer scale fabrication compatibility. For future high volume applications, integration and electrical pumping of soliton microcombs is essential. To date, however, microcombs still rely on optical pumping by bulk external laser modules that provide the required coherence, frequency agility and power levels for soliton formation. Electrically-driven, chip-integrated microcombs are inhibited by the high threshold power for soliton formation, typically exceeding the power of integrated silicon based lasers, and the required frequency agility for soliton initiation. Recent advances in high-Q Si3N4 microresonators suggest that electrically driven soliton microcombs are possible. Here we demonstrate an electrically-driven, chip-integrated soliton microcomb by coupling an indium phosphide (III-V) multiple-longitudinal-mode laser diode chip to a high-Q Si3N4 photonic integrated microresonator. We observe that self-injection locking of the laser diode to the microresonator, which is accompanied by a x1000 fold narrowing of the laser linewidth, can simultaneously initiate the formation of dissipative Kerr solitons. By tuning the current, we observe a transition from modulation instability, breather solitons to single soliton states. The system requires less than 1 Watt of electrical power, operates at electronically-detectable sub-100 GHz mode spacing and can fit in a volume of ca. 1cm3.



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