Nonlinear optics with local phasematching by quantum-based meta-material

P. Ginzburg*, A. Hayat, M. Orenstein

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We propose a novel artificial medium, which locally provides both the optical nonlinearity and simultaneously the phasematching for the macroscopic build-up of the generated field. This is achieved by a special assembly of semiconductor quantum wells, which by careful design are both nonlinear and appropriately dispersive. A critical point for a practical realization of this meta-material is its wavelength tuning capability accomplished by applying bias voltage to the semiconductor structure, employing a voltage-controlled tunnelling-induced transparency mechanism. We theoretically demonstrate the quantum-based phasematched nonlinear meta-material principles using a specific structure comprised of GaN/AlN quantum wells providing the required near-infrared intersubband transitions. For this meta-material we estimate the enhanced second-order nonlinearity to be around 10-8mV-1, while the phasematching, tuned by a single-volt bias improves the nonlinear coherence length from 40νm up to practically infinity.

Original languageEnglish
Article numberS11
Pages (from-to)S350-S354
JournalJournal of Optics A: Pure and Applied Optics
Issue number9
StatePublished - 1 Sep 2007
Externally publishedYes


  • Meta-material
  • Nonlinear
  • Quantum structure


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