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Reciprocal phase transition-enabled electro-optic modulation

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Version 2 2023-06-08, 12:54
Version 1 2023-01-10, 02:30
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posted on 2023-06-08, 12:54 authored by Fang Zou, Lei Zou, Ye Tian, Yiming Zhang, Erwin Bente, Weigang Hou, Yu Liu, Siming Chen, Victoria Cao, Lei Guo, Songsui Li, Lianshan Yan, Wei Pan, Dusan Milosevic, Zizheng Cao, A. M. J. Koonen, Huiyun Liu, Xihua Zou
Electro-optic (EO) modulation is a well-known and essential topic in the field of communications and sensing. Its ultrahigh efficiency is unprecedentedly desired in the current green and data era. However, dramatically increasing the modulation efficiency is difficult due to the monotonic mapping relationship between the electrical signal and modulated optical signal. Here, a new mechanism termed phase-transition EO modulation is revealed from the reciprocal transition between two distinct phase planes arising from the bifurcation. Remarkably, a monolithically integrated mode-locked laser (MLL) is implemented as a prototype. A 24.8-GHz radio-frequency signal is generated and modulated, achieving a modulation energy efficiency of 3.06 fJ/bit improved by about four orders of magnitude and a contrast ratio exceeding 50 dB. Thus, MLL-based phase-transition EO modulation is characterised by ultrahigh modulation efficiency and ultrahigh contrast ratio, as experimentally proved in radio-over-fibre and underwater acoustic-sensing systems. This phase-transition EO modulation opens a new avenue for green communication and ubiquitous connections.

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