Abstract

The third- and fifth-order optical nonlinear properties of a new stilbazolium derivative, trans-1-[p-(p-dimethylaminobenzyl-azo)-benzyl]-2-(N-methyl-4-pyridinium)-ethene iodide (DABAZO-PEI), were investigated with a Q-switched and mode-locked pulse laser with a duration of 35 ps at 1064 nm. Its linear optical properties were also discussed. DABAZO-PEI exhibits two-photon absorption and strong excited-state absorption induced by two-photon absorption. A positive third-order nonlinear refraction caused by bound electrons and negative excited-state refraction caused by the two-photon absorption-generated excited states were also observed. The magnitude and the sign of the real (refractive) and the imaginary (two-photon absorption) parts of the molecular third-order polarizability, and the excited-state absorption and refraction cross sections, were measured. A feature worth noting is the values of excited-state absorption and refraction cross sections. They are all as high as 10-17 cm2. Based on the excited-state absorption induced by the two-photon-absorption mechanism, a highly efficient optical-limiting behavior for incident fluence in the range of 0–10 J/cm2 was demonstrated in a 1-cm-path quartz cell containing DABAZO-PEI solution in dimethyl sulfoxide. The optical-limiting threshold was estimated to be as low as 5 mJ/cm2.

© 2002 Optical Society of America

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