Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Abstract-Time domain modeling of terahertz quantum cascade lasers for frequency comb generation

Petar Tzenov, David Burghoff, Qing Hu, and Christian Jirauschek

The generation of frequency combs in the mid-infrared and terahertz regimes from compact and potentially cheap sources could have a strong impact on spectroscopy, as many molecules have their rotovibrational bands in this spectral range. Thus, quantum cascade lasers (QCLs) are the perfect candidates for comb generation in these portions of the electromagnetic spectrum. Here we present a theoretical model based on a full numerical solution of Maxwell-Bloch equations suitable for the simulation of such devices. We show that our approach captures the intricate interplay between four wave mixing, spatial hole burning, coherent tunneling and chromatic dispersion which are present in free running QCLs. We investigate the premises for the generation of QCL based terahertz combs. The simulated comb spectrum is in good agreement with experiment, and also the observed temporal pulse switching between high and low frequency components is reproduced. Furthermore, non-comb operation resulting in a complex multimode dynamics is investigated.
© 2016 Optical Society of America
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