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Kerry J. Vahala
California Institute of Technology
OpticsPhysicsOptoelectronicsLaserResonator
428Publications
45H-index
9,612Citations
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Publications 384
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EarthFinder is a NASA Astrophysics Probe mission concept selected for study as input to the 2020 Astrophysics National Academies Decadal Survey. The EarthFinder concept is based on a dramatic shift in our understanding of how PRV measurements should be made. We propose a new paradigm which brings the high precision, high cadence domain of transit photometry as demonstrated by Kepler and TESS to the challenges of PRV measurements at the cm/s level. This new paradigm takes advantage of: 1) broad w...
#1Boqiang Shen (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
#2Lin Chang (UCSB: University of California, Santa Barbara)H-Index: 10
Last. John E. BowersH-Index: 85
view all 17 authors...
While soliton microcombs offer the potential for integration of powerful frequency metrology and precision spectroscopy systems, their operation requires complex startup and feedback protocols that necessitate difficult-to-integrate optical and electrical components. Moreover, CMOS-rate microcombs, required in nearly all comb systems, have resisted integration because of their power requirements. Here, a regime for turnkey operation of soliton microcombs co-integrated with a pump laser is demons...
4 CitationsSource
#1Yu-Hung Lai (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
#2Myoung-Gyun Suh (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 11
Last. Kerry J. Vahala (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 45
view all 10 authors...
Source
#1Yu-Hung Lai (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
#2Myoung-Gyun Suh (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 11
Last. Kerry J. Vahala (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 45
view all 9 authors...
Inspired by the success of semiconductor-chip-based MEMs rotation sensors, there has long been interest in the possible realization of chip-based optical gyroscopes. Such devices could potentially be lightweight and rugged, while featuring some of the sensitivity advantages of Sagnac-based sensing devices. However, the performance of integrated-optical gyroscopes has lagged behind MEMS devices on account of difficult-to-achieve requirements for low-optical-loss chip-based waveguides and optical ...
Source
#1Chengying Bao (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 13
#2Zhiquan Yuan (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 2
view all 9 authors...
With their compact size and semiconductor-chip-based operation, frequency microcombs can be an invaluable light source for gas spectrcoscopy. However, the generation of mid-infrared (mid-IR) frequency combs with gigahertz line spacing as required to resolve many gas spectra represents a significant challenge for these devices. Here, a technique referred to as interleaved difference-frequency generation (iDFG) is introduced that densifies the spectral line spacing upon conversion of near-IR comb ...
1 CitationsSource
#1Heming Wang (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
#2Yu-Hung Lai (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
Last. Kerry J. Vahala (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 45
view all 5 authors...
Non-Hermitian Hamiltonians describing open systems can feature singularities called exceptional points (EPs). Resonant frequencies become strongly dependent on externally applied perturbations near an EP which has given rise to the concept of EP-enhanced sensing in photonics. However, while increased sensor responsivity has been demonstrated, it is not known if this class of sensor results in improved signal-to-noise performance. Here, enhanced responsivity of a laser gyroscope caused by operati...
5 CitationsSource
#1Heming Wang (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
#2Yu-Hung Lai (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 6
Last. Kerry J. Vahala (California Institute of Technology)H-Index: 45
view all 5 authors...
Exceptional points are singularities of open systems, and among their many remarkable properties, they provide a way to enhance the responsivity of sensors. Here we show that the improved responsivity of a laser gyroscope caused by operation near an exceptional point is precisely compensated by increasing laser noise. The noise, of fundamental origin, is enhanced because the laser mode spectrum loses the oft-assumed property of orthogonality. This occurs as system eigenvectors coalesce near the ...
1 CitationsSource
#1Chengying BaoH-Index: 13
#2Myoung-Gyun SuhH-Index: 11
Last. Andrey B. MatskoH-Index: 51
view all 12 authors...
Coherently-pumped (Kerr) solitons in an ideal optical microcavity are expected to undergo random quantum motion that determines fundamental performance limits in applications of soliton microcombs. Here, this diffusive motion and its impact on Kerr soliton timing jitter is studied experimentally. Typically hidden below technical noise contributions, the quantum limit is discerned by measuring counter-propagating solitons. Their relative motion features only weak interactions and also presents ex...
#1Lin Chang (UCSB: University of California, Santa Barbara)H-Index: 10
#2Weiqiang Xie (UCSB: University of California, Santa Barbara)H-Index: 4
Last. Songtao Liu (UCSB: University of California, Santa Barbara)H-Index: 6
view all 17 authors...
Recent advances in nonlinear optics have revolutionized integrated photonics, providing on-chip solutions to a wide range of new applications. Currently, state of the art integrated nonlinear photonic devices are mainly based on dielectric material platforms, such as Si3N4 and SiO2. While semiconductor materials feature much higher nonlinear coefficients and convenience in active integration, they have suffered from high waveguide losses that prevent the realization of efficient nonlinear proces...
6 CitationsSource
#1Chengying BaoH-Index: 13
#2Boqiang ShenH-Index: 6
Last. Kerry J. VahalaH-Index: 45
view all 9 authors...
Both the group velocity and phase velocity of two solitons can be synchronized by a Kerr-effect mediated interaction, causing what is known as soliton trapping. Trapping can occur when solitons travel through single-pass optical fibers or when circulating in optical resonators. Here, we demonstrate and theoretically explain a new manifestation of soliton trapping that occurs between counter-propagating solitons in microresonators. When counter-pumping a microresonator using slightly detuned pump...
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