, Volume 12, Issue 9, pp 483-489

Azobenzenes for photonic network applications: Third-order nonlinear optical properties

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We review the third-order nonlinear performance of pseudo-stilbene type azobenzenes with an eye to application in ultrafast optical signal processing. We discuss mechanisms responsible for the nonlinear response of the azobenzenes. By aggregating experimental data and theoretical trends reported in the literature, we identify five characteristic regions of optical nonlinear response. Analyzed with respect to Stegeman figures of merit, pseudo-stilbene type azobenzenes show promise for ultrafast optical signal processing in two spectral regions, one lying between the main and two-photon absorption resonances, and the other for wavelengths longer than the two-photon absorption resonance. © 2001 Kluwer Academic Publishers