Switching of a signal beam by another control beam at different wavelength is demonstrated experimentally using the optical bistability occurring in a 1.55m-distributed feedback semiconductor optical amplifier (DFBSOA) working in reflection. Counterclockwise (S-shaped) and reverse (clockwise) bistability are observed in the output of the control and the signal beam respectively, as the power of the input control signal is increased. With this technique an optical signal can be set in either of the optical input wavelengths by appropriate choice of the powers of the input signals. The switching properties of the DFBSOA are studied experimentally as the applied bias current is increased from below to above threshold and for different levels of optical power in the signal beam and different wavelength detunings between both input signals. Higher on-off extinction ratios, wider bistable loops and lower input power requirements for switching are obtained when the DFBSOA is operated slightly above its threshold value.
- distributed feedback lasers
- laser beams
- laser feedback
- semiconductor optical amplifiers