Room Temperature Bistability, Logic Gate Operation, Incoherent Switching and High Signal Gain with InSb Devices

  • S. D. Smith
  • F. A. P. Tooley


We present details of the performance of several devices utilising the giant nonlinear refractive index of InSb (n2 = 0.1 cm2/kW at 77 K and 5.5 µm; n2 = 10-4 cm2/kW at 300 K and 10.6 µm). Optical bistability was observed at 300 K using a CO2 laser with intensities of order 100 kW/cm2 and switching times 5–30 ns. At 77 K and 5.5 µm devices could be operated with cw holding beams combined with time-varying switching or signal pulses. The Tall-optical circuit elements1 demonstrated are: (i) AND, OR, NAND or NOR gates in which ‘switch on’ of the function is inferred to be on a picosecond timescale and ‘switch off’ of the order of carrier recombination time; (ii) the switching of one optical logic gate by another; (iii) switching of a bistable device in both directions with an incoherent beam; (iv) two beam signal amplification in a transphasor of order 1.3 × 104.


Logic Gate Optical Bistability Flash Lamp Switching Energy Bistable Switching 
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Copyright information

© Plenum Press, New York 1984

Authors and Affiliations

  • S. D. Smith
    • 1
  • F. A. P. Tooley
    • 1
  1. 1.Physics DepartmentHeriot-Watt UniversityRiccartonUK

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