This thesis presents the development of photonic microcells for use as the host for
coherent optics phenomena and related applications. A photonic microcell consists of a
length of hollow-core photonic crystal fibre (HC-PCF) with a gas-filled core that is
spliced to conventional optical fibre at either end to seal the gas within the fibre.
Towards the goal of demonstrating and assessing the coherence properties of quantum
optical effects in photonic microcells, the fabrication of two types of HC-PCF is
presented. The established photonic bandgap HC-PCF offers extremely low transmission
loss of ~10 dB/km over kilometre distances. However, the fibre has a limited
transmission bandwidth of ~50 THz and exhibits modal coupling unfavourable for many
applications. Work is presented on the tailoring of this fibre by control and shaping of
the core-surround in order to improve its modal properties. A second type of HC-PCF is
based on a large-pitch lattice, whose guidance relies on a new mechanism. This fibre
exhibits a much improved bandwidth (>1000 THz) and has a relatively higher but still
practical loss of ~1 dB/m.
The development of photonic microcells at microbar pressure level and with low optical
insertion loss is shown, an important step in the improvement of the technology for
coherent optics applications which will take advantage of the extreme gas-laser
interaction efficiency achieved in HC-PCF.
Finally, quantum optical effects are demonstrated in HC-PCF and photonic microcells
loaded with both the molecular gas acetylene and atomic vapour rubidium. The
observation of electromagnetically induced transparency (EIT) in acetylene-filled
HC-PCF represents the first such observation in a molecular gas, while the use of a
photonic microcell allows a comparison of many experimental configurations to explore
the coherence properties of coherent optical systems in the core of a HC-PCF.
Furthermore, EIT is observed unambiguously in a rubidium loaded HC-PCF for the first
time, and the anti-relaxation effects of a polymer coating demonstrated in this
|Date of Award||1 May 2008|
|Supervisor||Abdelfatah Benabid (Supervisor) & Philip Russell (Supervisor)|
- electromagnetically induced transparency
- photonic crystal fibre
- quantum optics