Ultrafast all-optical switching via coherent modulation of metamaterial absorption

Xu Fang*, Ming Lun Tseng, Jun Yu Ou, Kevin F. Macdonald, Din Ping Tsai, Nikolay I. Zheludev

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

131 Scopus citations


We report on the demonstration of a femtosecond all-optical modulator providing, without nonlinearity and therefore at arbitrarily low intensity, ultrafast light-by-light control. The device engages the coherent interaction of optical waves on a metamaterial nanostructure only 30 nm thick to efficiently control absorption of near-infrared (750-1040 nm) femtosecond pulses, providing switching contrast ratios approaching 3:1 with a modulation bandwidth in excess of 2 THz. The functional paradigm illustrated here opens the path to a broad family of meta-devices for ultrafast optical data processing in coherent networks.

Original languageEnglish
Article number141102
JournalApplied Physics Letters
Issue number14
StatePublished - 7 Apr 2014


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