Abstract

A new form of optical switching in photorefractive ferroelectric materials is described. Ferroelectric polarization reversal is used to reverse the c axis and, consequently, the direction of nonlinear gain in a photorefractive barium titanate crystal. We report optical switching in 100 μsec with a 60-to-1 on-off ratio when this technique is used. On–off ratios of 500 to 1 are predicted for typical crystals with gain–length products of 4.

© 1987 Optical Society of America

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