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Mid-IR optical limiter based on type-II quantum wells

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3 Author(s)
Khurgin, J.B. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Johns Hopkins Univ., Baltimore, MD, USA ; Vurgaftman, I. ; Meyer, J.R.

We show that strong optically induced intervalence band transitions in type-II InAs/GaSb/AlSb quantum wells lead to reverse saturable absorption, and propose to apply it to optical limiting in the mid-infrared spectral region. A salient feature of the proposed limiter is the flexibility of the design for different wavelengths and threshold powers. We develop a rigorous theoretical model of the proposed limiter, and use it to estimate the relationship between the key figures of merit: insertion loss, threshold, optical bandwidth and dynamic range. We investigate tradeoffs involving the dynamic range, optical bandwidth and thickness of the limiter, and show that one can attain a favorable combination of these.

Published in:

Quantum Electronics, IEEE Journal of  (Volume:40 ,  Issue: 10 )