Change the fiber diameter to make the fiber into a microresonator

According to a report by the American Physicists Organization Network on December 14, researchers in the British Fiber Lab made fine adjustments to the diameter of ordinary optical fibers on the nanometer scale, making the optical fiber a micro-resonator necessary for the manufacture of photonic computers. The computer has opened up new methods. Related research was published in the "Optical Letters" of the American Optical Society.

Photonic computer is a new type of computer that performs digital operations, logical operations, information storage and processing by optical signals. Because its operating speed and information storage capacity are much larger than electronic computers, many countries have invested heavily in photonic computer research. . However, in order to manufacture a true photonic computer, it is necessary to develop the basic component of an optical microresonator that can control the change of another beam with one beam.

For micro-resonators, the most promising design is of course a long series of micro-rings, which tightly seals the photon in the convoluted ring, and then passes the photon through one ring to the next. The longer the chain, the more information can be stored. However, even the most precise manufacturing process still produces small flaws in the ring, causing the signal to gradually weaken or even disappear completely.

The leader of the latest research, Misha Sametsky, and colleagues used the inherent properties of the fiber to fine-tune the diameter of the light on the nanometer scale, turning the fiber into a microresonator. They made one fiber very narrow and placed another fiber vertically near it. Because the two bundles of optical fibers are so close, and the original optical fiber has been reduced to a fraction of the original size, a part of the light energy can make a so-called "quantum leap" into another optical fiber.

The signal loss of this micro-resonator is very small, and at the same time, the distance that light can run can be higher than that of the micro-resonator manufactured by traditional methods by more than 2 orders of magnitude. Summittsky said: "The accuracy of the fiber diameter change is about one hundredth of a nanometer, which is also the highest accuracy." Moreover, if a sufficient number of fiber microresonators are coupled together, the information in the optical pulse can be It is kept long enough for scientists to perform photon calculations. Currently, they can couple 10 fiber microresonators together.

There have also been experiments using optical fibers as micro-resonators, but they mainly rely on polishing or melting the optical fiber to change its diameter, which not only makes the structure of the optical fiber very uneven, but also fails to reach the nanometer scale. The latest method can control the variation of the micro resonator's circumference to less than 0.1 nanometer accuracy. Scientists say that the ability to modify the diameter of the fiber at the nanometer scale benefits from an inherent property of the fiber. Therefore, as long as the fiber is manufactured in the same environment and heated to the melting point, the same effect can be obtained, which makes This technology can go from laboratory research to industrial manufacturing. These microresonators are expected to be used to manufacture various specialized equipment, but their greatest potential is in the manufacture of photonic computers and in basic physics research.

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