Stored Light via Stimulated Brillouin Scattering

This research is performed here at Duke University by Zhaoming Zhu and Daniel Gauthier, in collaboration with Robert Boyd at the University of Rochester.

Zhu, Gauthier, Boyd
Zhaoming Zhu, Daniel Gauthier, and Robert Boyd (from left to right).
Photo of Daniel Gauthier by Jimmy Dorff.

We are interested in understanding nonlinear interactions between light and matter. By exploiting such interactions, we demonstrated a method for storing the information encoded on a beam of light in the form of an acoustic wave and then converting the information back to the optical domain after a controllable storage time.  The method uses a standard optical fiber at room temperature and hence is potentially compatible with existing telecommunication infrastructure.  Our current research goal is to use other materials (in a fiber format) that will allow for longer storage time and reduce the peak power of the laser beam needed for storing and reading out the information.

Stored Light!  Our paper on storing light in an optical fiber appeared in the December 14, 2007 issue of Science Magazine.  See the links to the right to read more!  `Stored light in an optical fiber via Stimulated Brillouin Scattering,' Science 318, 1748 (2007).

A casual reader of our research might enjoy the 1966 science fiction story by Bob Shaw Light of other days, a story about a magical material known as Slow Glass.

DSO LogoSlowLight
This material is based upon work supported by the Defense Sciences Office (DSO) Slow Light program of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA)

Any opinions, findings, and conclusions or recommendations expressed in this material are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the funding agency.