Higher-dimensional supersymmetric microlaser arrays

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Science  23 Apr 2021:
Vol. 372, Issue 6540, pp. 403-408
DOI: 10.1126/science.abg3904

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Supersymmetric switch-on

A common route to enhancing the output light from a laser system is to couple multiple lasers to form an array. However, crosstalk and interference between different modes of the individual lasers are generally detrimental to performance, leading to instabilities, and could ultimately be damaging to the laser cavities. Qiao et al. worked with the mathematical framework of supersymmetry, a theory developed in high-energy physics to attempt to describe the makeup and properties of particles, to design a stable two-dimensional laser array. Based on symmetry arguments, the method is scalable and could prove to be a practical platform with which to design and develop complex photonic systems.

Science, this issue p. 403


The nonlinear scaling of complexity with the increased number of components in integrated photonics is a major obstacle impeding large-scale, phase-locked laser arrays. Here, we develop a higher-dimensional supersymmetry formalism for precise mode control and nonlinear power scaling. Our supersymmetric microlaser arrays feature phase-locked coherence and synchronization of all of the evanescently coupled microring lasers—collectively oscillating in the fundamental transverse supermode—which enables high-radiance, small-divergence, and single-frequency laser emission with a two-orders-of-magnitude enhancement in energy density. We also demonstrate the feasibility of structuring high-radiance vortex laser beams, which enhance the laser performance by taking full advantage of spatial degrees of freedom of light. Our approach provides a route for designing large-scale integrated photonic systems in both classical and quantum regimes.

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