Optical and Acoustic Device Applications of Ferroelastic Crystals
This dissertation presents the discovery of a means of creating uniformly periodic domain gratings in a ferroelastic crystal of neodymium pentaphosphate (NPP). The uniform and non-uniform domain structures which can be created in NPP have the potential applications as tunable active gratings for lasers, tunable diffraction gratings, tunable Bragg reflection gratings, tunable acoustic filters, optical modulators, and optical domain wall memories. The interaction of optical and acoustic waves with ferroelastic domain walls in NPP is presented in detail. Acoustic amplitude reflection coefficients from a single domain wall in NPP are much larger than other ferroelastic-ferroelectrics such as gadolinium molybdate (GMO). Domain walls of NPP are used to make two demonstration acoustic devices: a tunable comb filter and a tunable delay line. The tuning process is accomplished by moving the position of the reflecting surface (the domain wall). A theory of the reflection of optical waves from NPP domain walls is discussed. The optical reflection is due to a change in the polarization of the wave, and not a change in the index, as the wave crosses the domain wall. Theoretical optical power reflection coefficients show good agreement with the experimentally measured values. The largest optical reflection coefficient of a single domain wall is at a critical angle and is 2.2% per domain wall. Techniques of injecting periodic and aperiodic domain walls into NPP are presented. The nucleation process of the uniformly periodic domain gratings in NPP is described in terms of a newly-discovered domain structure, namely the ferroelastic bubble. A ferroelastic bubble is the elastic analogue to the well-known magnetic bubble. The period of the uniformly periodic domain grating is tunable from 100 to 0.5 microns and the grating period may be tuned relatively rapidly. The Bragg efficiency of these tunable gratings is 77% for an uncoated crystal. Several demonstration devices which use these periodic structures are discussed. These devices are a tunable active grating laser (TAG laser), a tunable active grating (TAG), and a tunable acoustic bulk wave filter.
- Pub Date:
- DOMAIN WALLS;
- PERIODIC STRUCTURES;
- Physics: Acoustics