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Physicists crate low-power all-optical switch

from University of Maryland

Physicists at the Maryland-NIST Joint Quantum Institute have developed a switch that can steer a beam of light from one direction to another in only 120 picoseconds and requires very little power. This new switch consists of a quantum dot of indium and arsenic placed inside a resonant cavity. The quantum dot sits inside a photonic crystal that only transmits light in a narrow wavelength band. Previous optical switches have been able to work only by using bulky nonlinear-crystals and high input power. But so far, this milestone can only be achieved at 40 K, whereas higher power similar switches work at room temperature. more

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